Having a child with a neurological condition such as acute flaccid myelitis is tough. The symptoms are usually a combination of physical and emotional duress that makes it difficult to live with. Here is a list of 5 neurological conditions some of you might be dealing with.
Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) and Stroke
A stroke is a more serious version of a TIA, which occurs when an artery to the brain clots or bursts. This prevents oxygen and nutrients from reaching your brain cells, which causes them to die. The size of the clot and the length of time it remains in place determine how much damage occurs. A stroke can be prevented by taking blood thinners if your child has an irregular heartbeat or if you’ve had a previous stroke.
Parkinson’s disease is a progressive condition caused by a loss of neurons in the brain, causing patients to experience tremors, stiffness, and problems with balance. Patients may also suffer from depression or memory loss. Treatment options may include surgery, physical therapy and medication. Parkinson’s is not curable at the present time. A patient’s life expectancy is typically reduced by five to ten years compared with the average lifespan for individuals without the condition.
Acute Flaccid Myelitis (AFM)
AFM is a neurological condition that affects the spinal cord and causes paralysis. Common symptoms include muscle weakness and difficulty swallowing or slurred speech. There is no cure for acute flaccid myelitis, but doctors can treat its symptoms to help patients recover as much movement as possible. Some have used physical therapy to strengthen weak muscles, but more research needs to be done on how effective this is as a treatment method.
Bell’s palsy is a condition that leads to paralysis or facial weakness. The condition occurs when the seventh cranial nerve becomes inflamed, swollen or compressed. When a child has Bell’s palsy, they may experience drooping on one or both sides of their face, excessive tearing, inability to close their eye completely, drooling, etc. Treatment options include physical therapy for muscle tone, oral corticosteroids for inflammation reduction, anti-viral medication for herpes simplex infections, and topical steroids for temporary eye closure.
Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS)
Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) is a rare neurological condition that causes the body’s immune system to attack its nerves, resulting in muscle weakness, sensation changes and paralysis. Most of the time, however, these symptoms are short-lived. Once the immune system is calmed down by treatments like immunoglobulin or plasma exchange therapy, nerve recovery can begin. Although serious complications are possible, like permanent nerve damage or paralysis, most people with GBS recover fully after treatment.
Neurological conditions like acute flaccid myelitis don’t have the best of reputations in children. And regrettably, many parents don’t know anything about these conditions or how to treat them because they are relatively new to our society. Some of these neurological conditions have more fatal symptoms than others. If your child experiences one of these conditions, it’s important to seek immediate medical attention. You can take action for some neurological conditions, but only if you see a doctor as soon as possible.