The Nervous System (SN) is a system made up of different structures, such as the brain and spinal cord, that has the function of regulating and supervising all the activities that the body carries out. Sometimes, however, the SN is altered by certain diseases or injuries.
In this article we will learn about the 18 most common diseases of the Nervous System: we will explain the characteristics of each of them and their most frequent symptoms.
Nervous System: definition, structures and divisions
The Nervous System is a mechanism of integration and control of the organismwhich regulates and supervises all the activities that it carries out. This system receives and transmits information. Structurally it is divided into two: Central Nervous System (CNS) and Peripheral Nervous System (PNS).
The CNS is made up of the brain and spinal cord, and the SNP is made up of two divisions: the Somatic Nervous System (cranial and spinal nerves) and the Autonomous Nervous System (which controls vital functions).
The Nervous System is of great importance for the proper functioning of the body at motor, sensory, physical, sensory …
The 18 Most Common Nervous System Diseases
When the functioning or structure of the Nervous System is altered for some reason, diseases appear that can severely limit people’s lives.. In this article we will look at the 18 most common diseases of the Nervous System, which are the following:
Sclerosis is a disease of the nervous system that can be of two types: multiple sclerosis o amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ELA). Let’s see the characteristics of each one:
It is a degenerative and chronic disease. Its origin is autoimmune, and occurs when the axons of the cells of the nervous system (neurons) are progressively losing myelinMyelin is the substance that covers the axons, whose function is to transmit electrical impulses through the nervous system, quickly and efficiently.
Symptoms The most characteristic features of multiple sclerosis are: pain, tiredness, weakness, perceptual disturbances and muscular tension.
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
The ALS is also progressive and neurodegenerative. In this case, the motor neurons of the brain and spinal cord are altered and progressively deteriorate. As a result, the muscles of the body cannot receive nerve impulses, which hinders and prevents voluntary movement.
People often remain in wheelchairsand finally die, as the heart and breathing cease to function.
Epilepsy Involves Recurrence of Seizures (more than one must appear in order to be diagnosed). Its origin is due to a hyperactivation of certain groups of neurons. The most typical symptoms of epilepsy are: convulsions, loss of consciousness, weakness, lack of muscle control, etc.
Headaches are intense headaches. They can be of different types:
3.1. Tension headaches
They’re the most common. In this case the pain resembles a band or a helmet that squeezes the whole head.
3.2. Headache in outbreaks
The pain in this case appears in only one eye; “inside” it and around it.
It is also a common headache; its symptoms include, in addition to the headache: nausea and visual changes or disturbances.
3.4. Paranasal sinus headache
Here the pain is located behind the forehead and/or cheekbones.
4. Cerebrovascular Diseases
Cerebrovascular diseases par excellence are strokes (ACV), which occur when blood flow to a part of the brain stops. This leads to a lack of oxygen and nutrients in some areas of the brain. The result is temporary or permanent brain damage, depending on the severity of the injury.
Dementia Involves Severe Impairment of Cognitive Functionssuch as memory, reasoning, attention, intellectual capacity, etc.
Usually appears at an advanced age (from the age of 65), and interferes significantly in the life of the person, since when dementia is in an advanced stage, the patient ceases to be autonomous for their activities of daily living. The most common cause of amnesia is Alzheimer’s disease.
6. Confinement syndrome
Seclusion syndrome is another, although less common, but very serious, disease of the nervous system. The person with this syndrome cannot move any part of the body (maximum the eyes and/or mouth), being completely paralyzed.
It’s like she’s locked in her own body. It is caused by an injury to the brainstem (e.g. a heart attack) in the area of the protuberance.
Another of the diseases of the Nervous System are mononeuropathies, which involve damage to a single nerve of the SN. The symptoms involved are mainly loss of movement and/or sensitivity. The effects will depend on which nerve is affected.
Polyneuropathies, on the other hand, are diseases caused by an affectation of several peripheral nerves, which is usually symmetrical. This affectation usually occurs simultaneously on the four extremities of the body.
9. Guillain-Barré syndrome
Guillain-Barré Syndrome is a serious disease of autoimmune origin.which occurs because the immune system attacks a part of the nervous system. As a result, the nerves become inflamed, resulting in muscle weakness and/or paralysis.
Neuralgias are a type of pain, which often affects the nerves of the face, skull, or neck. It is caused by infection, irritation, or compression of these nerves. It is one of the most common diseases of the nervous system. It differs from headaches because in this case the pain appears in the face, and not in the head.
The tumors are excessive and uncontrolled cell proliferation somewhere on the body. In this case, we’re talking about the brain and the spinal cord. Some examples of SN tumors are medulloblastomas, astrocytomas, glioblastomas, etc.
When infections appear in the nervous system, we also consider them to be diseases of the nervous system; these affect the neurons and the structures of the SN. For example, HIV and syphilis, if left untreated, can end up damaging neurons and even causing neuronal death.
Trauma, though. are not considered to be diseases per secan also end up damaging the neurons and nerves of the SN. They are due to the presence of strong blows. We are talking, for example, about head injuries (TCE) that affect the brain, and spinal cord injuries that affect the spinal cord.
The symptoms of TCE can vary, causing alterations in consciousness, memory, movement, personality, etc. Spinal cord injuries cause paralysis of the extremities (lower and/or upper) below the injury, in addition to other symptoms. They are caused by a severance or rupture of the nerves in the spinal cord.
14. Autonomic dysreflexia
This disease occurs as a result of a spinal cord injury. In addition, the autonomic nervous system becomes overactive, and blood pressure increases. This is the result of difficulties in regulating blood pressure below the spinal cord injury.
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