When we talk about the nervous system, we usually think of the brain, And this is actually one of the most important elements that make it up.
However, the brain alone would be unable to interact and control the different organs and allow us to move and perform behaviors that facilitate our adaptation, even our survival, if there was no dedicated system in its. together. We are talking about the whole nervous system.
Its proper functioning is vital for human beings. However, there are various disorders and diseases that can endanger their proper functioning and significantly limit our abilities, even cause us death. Therefore, in this article we are going to talk about different types of diseases of the nervous system.
Diseases of the nervous system
Many disorders and diseases affect the nervous system.
While diseases that affect the brain and cerebellum can also be considered as such, in this article we will try to focus on those that have an effect on the nervous system as a whole, both central and peripheral nervous system.
Epilepsy is a disorder caused by overactivation of certain neural groups that for some reason are hypersensitiveAnd when faced with minimal activation, they react abnormally by producing various symptoms such as typical seizures (although these only occur in severe seizures), loss of consciousness, incoordination and uncontrollability of muscles and viscera, sluggishness and weakness.
There are a large number of tumors that can affect the nervous system, whether they originate in it or are affected by cancer metastasizing to another part of the body. In these tumors we can find astrocytomas, glioblastomas, gliomas, meningiomas or medulloblastomas, among others.
Damage is caused both by cell proliferation and by disruption of synaptic connections or the compression of neurons against other structures.
3. Cloister syndrome
This strange syndrome originates from damage to the brainstem or nerve connections. The subject is conscious but cannot communicate or move due to the lack of nerve connection between the brain and other parts of the body.
4. Multiple sclerosis
Demililinating disorders are a group of disorders in which the axons of neurons gradually lose the substance called myelin, which is of great importance in transfer bioelectric impulses through the nervous system.
This causes the body to gradually lose the ability to send messages effectively to the body, producing symptoms such as muscle tension, weakness, pain, and disturbances in perception.
5. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
In this disease, there is a gradual deterioration of the motor cells of the nervous system, gradually dying them. Thus, over time, the muscles stop receiving nerve impulses and eventually atrophy. This prevents voluntary movements.
Additionally, as the disorder progresses, it can eventually affect the heart and respiratory muscles and lead to death.
6. Diabetic neuropathies and other metabolic disorders
The presence of metabolic disorders such as diabetes mellitus can cause severe damage to nerves and neurons throughout the body. Nerve fibers are damaged, in addition to which the blood vessels cannot properly direct the flow due to improper glucose metabolism.
In case of diabetesThese problems are especially noticeable in the extremities, especially in the lower limbs. It can also affect organs such as the eyes or even the heart.
Infectious diseases can significantly affect all of the neurons and structures that make up the nervous system. HIV and untreated syphilis can alter and damage neurons. Also herpes simplex virus, cytomegalovirus and rabies. Encephalitis, meningitis, immunodeficiency which facilitates the action of other viruses, and neuronal necrosis and death are common.
This type of nervous system disease, particularly localized in the brain, is characterized by a degradation and progressive loss of neurons and their normal functioning which leads to the loss of various cognitive and motor skills.
Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or Huntington’s disease these are diseases that lead or can lead (not all people with Parkinson’s develop dementia as such, for example) to the progressive deterioration of nerve fibers.
Peripheral nerve injury by various mechanisms, such as continuous compression, the presence of infections or bleeding, or cutting.
Inflammatory process of various nerves or nervous tracts which generate a variety of symptoms such as tingling or loss of control and sensation, muscle wasting, weakness, diarrhea, erectile dysfunction or cardiorespiratory disorders, among others.
11. Trauma and severing
Although these are not illnesses per se, the presence of blows and wounds it can damage nerves and neurons in different parts of the body and prevent them from performing their functions normally.
You may lose awareness or control of muscle groups or even the organs concerned. Depending on the type of injury, it can even lead to cardiac arrest and death.
12. Guillain-Barré syndrome and other autoimmune diseases
Certain autoimmune diseases, such as Guillain-Barré syndrome, may be the cause that our immune system attacks nerves in the nervous system, injuring them and making it difficult, if not impossible, to transmit nerve signals.
13. Autonomic dysreflexia
Disease caused by injury to the spinal cord and overactivation of the autonomic nervous system, in addition to a dramatic and dangerous increased blood pressure due to the difficulty in regulating blood pressure in non-innervated areas, below the spinal cord injury.
14. monoplegia, hemiplegia and quadriplegia
The severing or damage of nerve fibers in the nervous system it can cause paralysis of parts of the body. This paralysis can occur in a specific place of the body (monoplegia), on one side of the body (hemiplegia) or even in all the limbs (quadriplegia), making it impossible to move and even the perception of touch of these areas.
Neuralgia is a group of diseases and disorders of the nervous system that they are characterized by the presence of pain resulting from dysfunction, Pinching or alteration of the nerve pathways related to the perception of pain.
- Adams, RD (1997). Principles of Neurology. 6th edition. McGraw-Hill.
- Bannister, C, Tew, B. (1991). Current Concepts of Spina Bificla and Hydrocephalus. London: Mac Keith Press.