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Dr. Nripen Bhaumik

MCh

Neurosurgeon, Kolkata

28 Years Experience  ·  600 at clinic
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Dr. Nripen Bhaumik MCh Neurosurgeon, Kolkata
28 Years Experience  ·  600 at clinic
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My experience is coupled with genuine concern for my patients. All of my staff is dedicated to your comfort and prompt attention as well....more
My experience is coupled with genuine concern for my patients. All of my staff is dedicated to your comfort and prompt attention as well.
More about Dr. Nripen Bhaumik
Dr. Nripen Bhaumik is an experienced Neurosurgeon in Chetla, Kolkata. She has been a successful Neurosurgeon for the last 28 years. She has done MCh . You can meet Dr. Nripen Bhaumik personally at Nripen Clinic in Chetla, Kolkata. Book an appointment online with Dr. Nripen Bhaumik on Lybrate.com.

Lybrate.com has a number of highly qualified Neurosurgeons in India. You will find Neurosurgeons with more than 34 years of experience on Lybrate.com. You can find Neurosurgeons online in Kolkata and from across India. View the profile of medical specialists and their reviews from other patients to make an informed decision.

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MCh - University of Calcutta - 1989
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English
Hindi

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31/1, Lake Avenue ChetlaKolkata Get Directions
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Hi Dr. I am suffering from brain tiredness. I easily get tired after that even I can't talk properly. Different words I say. Pls suggest supplement so I get energetic.

M.Sc - Psychological Counseling, B.A ( Hons) - Psychology
Psychologist, Delhi
Hello, try taking some glucon d, if you are not a diabetes patient. Add dates, walnuts and almonds to your diet. Drink plenty of fluids, like, coconut water, buttermilk, plain watter, sweetlime juice. All the best.
2 people found this helpful
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I am suffering facial numbness since 2nd april' 2015, mri done by doctor's advice and prescribed medicine. Without medicine can get relief by facial yoga. What medicine given let you know after a while & also advice me what deficiency have or what types of illness, brain cancer, tumor, brain stroke and what medicine, yoga and messages require to get cure and relief such numbness waiting for your reply. Thanking you,

Dip. SICOT (Belgium), MNAMS, DNB (Orthopedics), MBBS
Orthopedist, Delhi
Hi thanks for your query and welcome to lybrate. I am Dr. Akshay from fortis hospital, new delhi. It is advisable for a neurophysician to see your query and answer it appropriately. Do not hesitate to contact me if you need any further assistance.
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I safring from migraine problem since from 4 month and thyroid problem also what should I do.

BAMS
Ayurveda, Bangalore
Hi, take tab. Shirashooladi vajra ras 1-1-1 with ginger juice. Apply ginger paste on the forehead. Instill cephagraine nasal drops 2 drops to each nostril 3 time a day. You can undergo panchakarma treatment like nasya or shirodhara after checking with an ayurvedic doctor.
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What causes suffering migraine pain in inside head about circle of eye. And pls tell me treatment of migraine pain.

MBBS, cc USG
General Physician, Gurgaon
I am giving some health tips for Migraine headache •1.You can turn off light for some time •2.Apply hot or cold compresses to your head or neck. •Ice packs have a numbing effect, which may dull the sensation of pain. •Hot packs and heating pads can relax tense muscles. • •3.Warm showers or baths may have a similar effect. •4.You can take Tea or coffee( but not excess) 5.Sleep well Here are some tips to encourage sound sleep. Establish regular sleep hours. •Minimize distractions. •Your eating habits can influence your migraines. •Be consistent. Eat at about the same time every day. Don't skip meals. Fasting increases the risk of migraines Avoid foods that trigger migraines kindly consult Physician for further management
1 person found this helpful
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How to know if you have migraine? Is there any confirmation test or something which confirms it?

MBBS
General Physician, Cuttack
Symptoms of Migraine 1.Unilateral Headache, eye pain 2.Throbbing and pulsating pain 3.Nausea and Vomiting 4.Increased sensitivity to light and sound 5.Feeling of Dizzy or Faint Cause Unknown.May be due to decrease in brain chemical-serotonin which regulates pain in the nervous system,genetic,environmental factor Triggering factors a)Hunger(missedmeal) ,drinking alcohol(redwine),/coffee,tea) b)Inadequatesleep, stress,anxiety,depression,agitation, bright light/sun glare c)environmental factors like glaring light, Loud noise,strong smell/prfume/passive smoking d)weather changes,high altitude, e)use of oral contraceptive,hormonal changes like oestrogen fluctuation during pregnancy, menopause, hormonal replacement therapy f)continuous use of cell phone g) salted food,aged cheese, processed food
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I am 41 years male having fits and seizures. What's the caused and what should I do?

BHMS
General Physician,
Thanks for question on lybrate, it is caused by a disturbance in the electrical activity of brain many conditions can cause fits/seizures like infections, low blood sugar, electrolytes imbalance, treatment of underlying cause as well as medications can prevent recurrence.
1 person found this helpful
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I felt senior numbness specially in my leg after sitting sometime in folding leg position or seat long time. I took neurobion forte twice daily for one month but did not get any result. Please help me.

FRHS, Ph.D Neuro , MPT - Neurology Physiotherapy, D.Sp.Med, DPHM (Health Management ), BPTh/BPT
Physiotherapist, Chennai
I felt senior numbness specially in my leg after sitting sometime in folding leg position or seat long time. I took n...
Do Take Tens Therapy for pain relief for 12 days followed by strengthening exercise from physiotherapist Best wishes.
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How to Deal with Severe Epilepsy

FRCS - Neurosurgery(UK), M.Ch - Neuro Surgery, MS - General Surgery, MBBS
Neurosurgeon, Ahmedabad
How to Deal with Severe Epilepsy

The word epilepsy brings to mind visions of people frothing at the mouth and rolling on the ground. However, epilepsy affects each patient in a different way. This can make it hard to recognize at times. In the more serious cases of epilepsy, an epileptic attack can make a patient injure himself or develop other life threatening conditions. In rare cases, epilepsy can even cause death. Thus it becomes imperative to understand how to deal with epilepsy.

Treatment options for epilepsy can be categorized as medication, surgical procedures and dietary changes.

Medication: Medication for epilepsy is prescribed on the basis of the symptoms presented and the type of epilepsy the patient is suffering from. In most cases, seizures can be controlled with a single type of medication, but in others, the doctor may need to prescribe a combination of medicines to control epilepsy. These forms of medication do have side effects and hence any reactions to the medication must be immediately brought to the doctor's notice. The dosage for epilepsy medication may need to be varied with time. An epileptic patient should never discontinue medication on their own.

Surgery: Depending on the type of seizures and the area of the brain affected, a doctor may advise surgery in cases of severe epilepsy. Surgery can help reduce the number of seizures experienced or completely stop them. Surgery to treat epilepsy is of many types. Some of the common procedures are:

  1. Surgery to remove tumor of any such conditions that may be triggering the epileptic attacks
  2. Surgery to remove a small section of the brain from where a seizure originates. This may also be referred to as a lobectomy.
  3. Multiple subpial transaction or a surgery that involves making a series of cuts in the brain to prevent the seizures from spreading to other parts of the brain.
  4. Surgery to sever the neural connections between the right and left hemispheres of the brain.
  5. Surgery to remove half the brain's cortex or outer layer

Dietary changes: A diet rich in fats and low in carbohydrates can help reduce seizures. This is known as a ketogenic diet and aims at making the body break down fats instead of carbohydrates. It can cause a buildup of uric acid in the body and thus should be practiced only under the guidance of a dietician. In cases where epileptic attacks are triggered by malnutrition and birth defects, taking vitamin supplements can help lower the frequency of seizures.

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My mother is 45 years old she got paralyzed last year on 1st jan. She is almost recovered but her fingers are still not responding. Please help!

BPTh/BPT
Physiotherapist, Delhi
Paralysis cases takes a lot of time to recover. You need to have patience. Also emphasize on passively moving her fingers frequently in day. Make sure she grips some large cylindrical objects first like glass and then progress to fine objects like spoon, keys, plates.
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My 83 years old mother has been diagnosed of Alzheimer's disease and with the first dose of allopathic medicine - DONEP- she ended up being admitted in the hospital in emergency for extreme weakness and nausea. Now she refuses to take that medicine. About a month back I started giving her homeopathic - BARYTA CARB 200 thrice a day 5 balls but do not see any improvement in her. I have heard that Ayurveda has good treatment for alzheimer, request you to please advise. When the memory test was done by the psychiatrist, my mother scored 20/30. She has no other health problems.

MBBS, DPM
Psychiatrist, Bangalore
My 83 years old mother has been diagnosed of Alzheimer's disease and with the first dose of allopathic medicine - DON...
Your mother was diagnosed as Alzheimer's. Since her score is 20/30 (probably on MMSE), it must be mild dementia. It is unfortunate that she is unable to tolerate Donep (Donepezil). i hope it is a 5 mg tablet to start with. Since she does not have any other health problem, her life expectancy must be - many more years. Alzheimer's is a progressive disorder. Slowly she will become more and more forgetful and may have behavioural problems too. Donepezil will arrest the disorder from progressing further, though it may not improve her memory which she already lost. It will help if your mother has any behavioural problems also. If you think of all these benefits, you may try Donep with an anti vomiting drug. However please keep your mother's preserved memory active and encourage her in few memory games.
1 person found this helpful
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I am 71, and having type 2 diabetic, since 25 years and is on tablets. I have numbness in my feet, although I am regularly taking multi vitamin.

MBBS, DMRD, MD - Radio Diagnosis, FIIM(Ayurved), D.SC, Post Doctoral Fellowship of Institute of Indian Medicine, Ph.D
Non-Invasive Conservative Cardiac Care Specialist, Ahmednagar
I am 71, and having type 2 diabetic, since 25 years and is on tablets. I have numbness in my feet, although I am regu...
Dear This is probably diabetic neuropathu Laser chemotherapy. And natural support systems can help you give relief Vm.
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I am 25 years old. My symptoms are heaviness in head, headache, trembling, palpitation, deep breathing, incontinence of urine, nervousness, restlessness, pressure in eye, problem seeing in sun light, forgetfulness, dry lips etc. Please help me.

M.B.B.S., F.I.C.A. (USA), P.G.D.I.H, F.C.G.P., D.C.A.H
Psychiatrist, Vadodara
I am 25 years old. My symptoms are heaviness in head, headache, trembling, palpitation, deep breathing, incontinence ...
it seems you are having anxiety and restlessness. Are insecure and afraid of something in your life? you need to checkup with an expert nearby or connect me and meet to open your heart out to express yourself for guidance and support.
18 people found this helpful
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Cant we save patient having a paralysis attack and then she suffers from pneumonia? please answer.

MBBS
General Physician, Mumbai
Many times when we are feeding the patient with paralysis and if small amount of food or water enters the lungs it can cause pneumonia and it becomes difficult to treat but we need to have a team effort to treat the person
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My friend is suffering from intense migraine and is unable to even sleep. What can help?

BAMS
Ayurveda, Bangalore
Hi, take tab. Shirashooladi vajra ras 1-1-1 with ginger juice. Apply ginger paste on the forehead. Instill cephagraine nasal drops 2 drops to each nostril 3 time a day.
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I am 27 years old male, I am suffering from hand shivering since long time could you please advise me to whom I should contact?

Master in Psychology, MD - Ayurveda, Dems, Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS)
Ayurveda,
U should consult a neurologist or a ayurveda consultant. There are many causes for tremors, for eg malnutrition, anxiety, lack of sleep, over exertion, imbalance in neurotransmitters and many more.
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Hi, My relative's Daughter lives in Mumbai is in very serious condition. She is suffering from Brain tumor and her parents gave treatment in many hospitals but no satisfactory result given by hospitals. Please Help.

BHMS
Homeopath, Chennai
Hi, My relative's Daughter  lives in Mumbai is in very serious condition. She is suffering from Brain tumor and her p...
The presenting symptoms of a primary brain tumor are typically classified as generalized or focal. Headache is more prevalent in patients with faster growing, high grade tumors. Seizures are a more common presenting feature in lower grade tumors.CSF dissemination of tumor cells should be suspected in patients with neurologic deficits that cannot be attributed to the primary tumor. Homeopathy is one of the most popular holistic systems of medicine. The selection of remedy is based upon the theory of individualization and symptoms similarity by using holistic approach. This is the only way through which a state of complete health can be regained by removing all the sign and symptoms from which the patient is suffering. The aim of homeopathy is not only to treat brain tumor but to address its underlying cause and individual susceptibility. As far as therapeutic medication is concerned, several remedies are available to cure brain tumor symptoms that can be selected on the basis of cause, sensations and modalities of the complaints. 
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All About Parkison's Disease

MBBS, MHS, MD - Neurology (USA), Fellowship in Epilepsy, Clinical Attachment in Movement disorders
Neurologist,
All About Parkison's Disease

* Should I be afraid of talking to the doctor?
No. Every doctor wants his/her patient to recover as soon as possible. If patients have the right knowledge, they are able to interpret and report their symptoms better. Having this knowledge prevents unnecessary anxiety and greatly facilitates diagnosis and treatment.

It is the duty of every doctor to provide the right information to the patient, and every doctor tries to do this to the best of his/ her ability. Sometimes it is not possible to provide thorough information and answer all questions of a particular patient, because then the doctor will not be able to give adequate time to the next patient. Th is is the main reason behind writing this book. In many cases, patients do not want to talk to their doctor because they are afraid of knowing more about their illness. This is the wrong approach. Knowledge is power. I assure you that having the right knowledge will decrease your anxiety and help you get better.

I do have one suggestion: before going to the doctor, write down all your questions on a piece of paper. Almost all doctors will be very happy to answer your questions if you ask them efficiently.

* Why should I pay attention to my symptoms? just run some tests and you will know what disease I have...
Tests can be helpful, but they cannot diagnose all diseases. Often, no test can detect the small short-circuits in the brain that are responsible for causing seizures. Until very recently, there was absolutely no test that could diagnose parkinson's disease. Tests cannot tell the doctor how you are responding to the medication. For example, in parkinson's the doctor may ask you how you feel in the morning, how long the eff ect of medication lasts, do your arms or shoulders jerk after you take medication, and so on. Each symptom is important for the correct diagnosis and treatment of your condition. You and your immediate family members can provide the doctor with this essential information. If you have difficulty remembering your symptoms, you should note them in a notebook. If you have difficulty describing some of your symptoms, you should make a video recording for 3-5 minutes using a smartphone or digital camera (android, Iphone etc). Such recordings are tremendously helpful for diagnosis and treatment.


* What are the common tests used to diagnose brain diseases?
The three tests most commonly used are:
Mri, ct scan and eeg. Other specific tests have been described in the relevant chapters.
(i) Mri (magnetic resonance imaging) scan:
An mri scan is probably the most important test for diagnosis. It can diagnose many diseases such as a stroke, tumor and inflammation. Mri scanning is done in a big tube shaped machine which is attached to a bed. Th e patient sleeps on the bed for 30-45 minutes. Th e bed slowly moves back and forth through the machine. During this time the machine clicks very detailed pictures of the patient's brain.

Please note that during the scan you may hear some loud whooshing and clicking sounds. Th ese are just the sounds of

Magnets and motors inside the machine, and there is no need to be concerned by these noises. Some people may feel anxious because of the small space within the scanner, and a few people may need medications to decrease this anxiety. Mri scanning is extremely safe; there is usually no health risk. Before the scan, please inform the doctor about any metal inserts or implants (e. G. Heart defi brillator) In your body.

Mri test machines are of various strengths such as 1.5 tesla, 3 tesla and so on. Mri machines with a higher number (for example 3 tesla) take better pictures. This book was written in 2015, at this time the highest resolution mri available in india was 3 tesla.

(ii) Ct (computerized tomography) scan:
The CT Scan machine looks just like the mri machine. It has a bed that moves back and forth slowly while the machine takes a picture of your brain.

CT scan has a few advantages over mri:
(i) It is less expensive. An mri may cost around 5000-7000 rupees, while a ct scan usually costs around 1000 inr (indian rupees).
(ii) It can be done very quickly. An mri may take 1 hour or more, but a ct scan can be completed in 10-15 minutes.

Unfortunately, CT scanning has some significant disadvantages:
- The picture obtained by a ct scan is not as clear as that obtained by an mri. The difference in quality is striking: it is like the diff erence between a black-and-white tv from the 70s and the new lcd televisions available today.

- CT-Scan exposes your body to radiation.
Radiation is bad for your body, and especially a baby's body. Therefore, pregnant women should never have a ct scan. Ct scan is commonly used during emergencies. When a patient comes to the emergency room, a rapid ct scan may be done to look for emergencies which may need immediate surgery such as bleeding inside the brain. An mri is usually done the next day, when the patient is more stable.

If you have already had an mri, then usually you do not need a ct scan. Th ere are a few rare conditions (e. G. Calcification in brain) which are seen better on a ct, but these are very uncommon.

(iii) Eeg (electro-encephalo-graphy):
Our brain functions because of electric currents traveling from one place in the brain to another. An eeg measures this electric current.

To do this test, small pieces of wire are stuck to the head using glue. These wires are then connected to an amplifi er and the electrical activity in the brain is recorded. The machine itself does not send any current to the brain. It only records current. Therefore, there is no pain or discomfort, and this is an extremely safe test. Anyone can have this test, including pregnant women, babies and very sick patients. Th is test is most often used for evaluating seizures. An eeg is also used in cases where the patient is unconscious for a long time, without a clear reason.


1. Doctor, my hand keeps shaking. It stops shaking only at night. Why is this happening?
The shaking of your hands is called a tremor. There are many causes of hand tremor. Th e most common causes are essential tremor and parkinson's disease. If you have essential tremor, your hands will shake more when you try to do something. For example, writing may become very diffi cult or water may fall down when you try to drink form a glass.

If you have parkinson's disease, the tremor is maximum when your hands are resting and doing nothing. For example, when you are sitting on a chair and watching tv comfortably, the hand starts shaking. Besides these common causes, there are other causes. For example, shaking of the hand (s) can begin after a small stroke near an important part of the brain called the red nucleus or in a condition called dystonia which causes contraction of the hand muscles without any clear reason some medications (see list), severe anxiety and very excessive tea/coff ee can cause hand shaking. Finally, there are diseases that have symptoms exactly like parkinson's disease.

Therefore, I need to examine you carefully. Based on observing you so far, I think there is a possibility that you may have parkinson's disease.


2. Parkinson's! I have heard this is an extremely serious illness! is this disease fatal?
No. Parkinson's disease is not fatal. Yes, but it is important to treat parkinson's disease promptly. Th e diagnosis of parkinson's disease is often missed. If not treated on time, patients with parkinson's disease are significantly restricted in their day-to-day activities, practically becoming disabled if treatment is delayed for a long time.

Secondly, if left untreated, patients with parkinson's disease can have frequent falls causing serious injuries including fractures and head injuries. Hence the diagnosis and treatment of parkinson's disease should be done as soon as possible.


3. What causes parkinson's disease?
Our brain runs on electricity and chemicals. If there is too much or too little of a particular chemical in your brain, it causes a disease. Parkinson's disease is caused by the reduction of a chemical called dopamine in our brain.

Dopamine is produced in the back of our brain, in a part called the mid-brain. It is then transported forwards and is widely distributed throughout the entire brain. It fi res up the movement centers of our brain, and helps them communicate better with one another. In parkinson's disease the cells in the midbrain producing dopamine gradually

Die. No one quite understands why this happens. Then effect is that the movement centers of the brain don't Communicate well with one another, and this produces the various symptoms of parkinson's disease.


4. Ok so what are other symptoms of parkinson's?
You already know one symptom shaking of the hands while resting. There are many other symptoms in patients with parkinson's disease and recognizing them is often very easy:
- Their muscles are often stiff and become inflexible, but they often do not complain about it. Th ey may complain that they are not able to do some things such as comb their hair.
- They are very slow in doing everything. They walk very slowly. They often bend forward while walking.
- They have difficulty turning around when they are walking.
- Sometimes they can get stuck in one position. Often this happens while walking, but may happen while doing something else.
- In later stages, they can fall frequently.
- Their friends may notice that their face has become expressionless and they just appear to stare off without blinking into distant space.

All patients do not have all of these symptoms. Some patients experience just the shaking of hands; other people experience just the muscle stiffness and so on. Often as people get older, more and more of the dopamine producing cells are destroyed and patients start developing more symptoms. But it takes years for this to happen and it may not happen in all people. In some patients, parkinson's disease remains restricted to just a few symptoms.


5. Ok doctor, thankfully I seem to be having just the hand shaking at this time. But other than the symptoms you just described, I am having other symptoms. I am always constipated, I cannot sleep well, and my saliva keeps dribbling from my mouth. Is it possible that these symptoms are also related to parkinson's disease?
Yes. It is not just possible but very likely that all these symptoms are due to parkinson's disease. Parkinson's disease is recognized by all doctors as a disease affecting movement. But in addition to movement problems, patients can have many other problems.

These are frequently not recognized, even by physicians, and therefore left untreated. If recognized and treated (and simple treatments are available for many of these symptoms), their resolution can significantly improve the patient's quality of life. It is important that your doctor should think about other diseases too. For example

If you have back pain, it is important that the doctor should think about arthritis of the back, if you have impotence your doctor should think about diabetes etc. But in many cases, no other cause can be found - these problems are due to parkinson's disease. About 10-20 years ago, even doctors did not know about these complications of parkinson's disease. It is a matter of great pride for me that I had the opportunity to receive training from the world-famous indian professor who is at the forefront of research regarding these symptoms: Dr. Kallol ray chaudhuri at king's college hospital in london.


6. How can you be sure that I have parkinson's disease?
A better patient history and examination will help me to confirm my diagnosis. We need to rule out other problems which look like parkinson's disease. Certain drugs may produce symptoms that are very similar to parkinson's disease (see list). Make sure you are not taking these medications, and avoid these medications in the future.

There are a few other diseases which have almost the same symptoms at parkinson's disease. Their names are complicated! these include diseases such as progressive supranuclear palsy (psp), multiple systems atrophy (msa) and cortico- basal degeneration (cbd)! th names are not very important the important thing is that there are other diseases that look just like parkinson's disease. Some of these diseases are identified by your doctor by looking for small clues on your exam: such as your blood pressure and the way your eyes move. Now let me tell you something very frankly even after a very detailed history and meticulous examination, the diagnosis may not be clear in some patients, even to the best of doctors in the best of institutions.


7. So isn't there a test for parkinson's disease?
Unfortunately, there is no test for parkinson's disease which can prove it with 100% accuracy. An mri (see information for everyone section) can be helpful to rule out some other diseases e. G. Multiple strokes, and 
Therefore many doctors get an mri in patients with parkinson's disease. There is one test that can be helpful. It

Is called the dat scan. The dat scan is abnormal in parkinson's disease, but it is also abnormal in some other diseases that look like parkinson's disease! therefore it is helpful only in certain cases. There are a few other tests like a cardiac scan (mibg scan), but these are only available at a few research centers, and again, do not help to completely rule out other diseases.


8. But. That is very concerning. What you are saying is that in some patients the diagnosis remains unclear?
You are correct. In most cases, the diagnosis of parkinson's disease can be made with certainty. But about 10% of patients have an uncommon mixture of symptoms so that no doctor, no blood test, no investigation can confidently determine if the patient has parkinson's disease or if he/she has another, similar disease. In such cases, most doctors explain the situation to the patients, and give them anti- parkinson's medications such as levodopa. Usually, a dramatic improvement is seen if the patient has parkinson's disease. If a patient takes an adequate quantity of Levodopa for 4-6 weeks and there is no clinical improvement, it is very unlikely that he has parkinson's disease.

These medications cause clinical improvement in about 1/3rd of all patients with the other diseases such as msa, psp etc. However, this improvement is not as dramatic as the improvement seen in parkinson's disease and frequently does not last as long. As the years go by, other symptoms develop (such as urinary problems, eye movement problems and falling) and a more definite diagnosis can be made on the basis of repeat examination.

9. Hmm. Doctor, there must be several medicines for parkinson's. If the parkinson's is caused by a lack of dopamine, shouldn't consuming dopamine help to reduce the symptoms of the parkinson's?
Yes, there are many medications and yes you are correct providing extra dopamine to the brain is one of the best ways to make the symptoms better. I have provided a list of these medications, but it is worth highlighting two of them: levodopa is the oral form of dopamine. It is converted into dopamine when it goes inside the brain. Th is is usually the fi rst medication that is started. It is available in standard, dispersible and extended-release

Preparations. Young patients with very mild symptoms of parkinson's disease are given a diff erent kind of medication initially. These medications are called dopamine agonists. Th ere are 3 dopamine agonist medications: pramipexole, ropirinole, and rotigotine. Th ey are available in standard and extended release preparations.


10. So, what you are saying is that the dose of parkinson's medications does not stay constant throughout life?
You are correct. Parkinson's disease often progresses as patients grow older. Some symptoms change and become less prominent but on the whole the symptoms become more severe. Th is progression is probably caused by gradual death of more and more cells producing dopamine. Very few people have side eff ects due to these based on the symptoms that develop, the medications. Often, parkinson's disease dose of parkinson's medication may need progresses as patients grow older and new to be changed, or new medications may be given. For example, if you have trouble sleeping at night, then the doctor can ask you to take an extra levodopa pill at night or an extended release ropnirole pill. If the benefi cial effect of levodopa is not lasting for as long as it used to, the doctor may ask you to take entacapone with the levodopa. If you have constipation the doctor will prescribe a laxative and so on. Sometimes it may take a few trials of different medications over 1-2 weeks to find the right combination that works for you. Parkinson's is not a deadly disease. Th ere are many medications for parkinson's. Th e doctor needs to have precise information about the patient's symptoms in order to prescribe the right medications. In parkinson's disease, the doctor needs help from his/her patient. It is essential to record your symptoms accurately and visit your doctor regularly, every 3 to 6 months.


11. Doctor, you are saying that frequently the dose of levodopa needs to be increased. But what happens if too much levodopa gets into the person's brain?
Yes, this can happen but it is not life-threatening. When there is excessive dopamine in the brain, the body starts moving too much. Often there are small jerks in the neck, shoulders and sometimes in the leg. If you are a fan of michael jackson, you have seen break-dancing. Th ese excessive movements look like break-dancing. Th e medical term

For these excessive movements is dys-kinesias. It is very important for you to be aware of them and remember the word: dys-kinesias. Often, dys-kinesias are at their maximum 1-2 hours after you take levodopa. If you have trouble recognizing these movements, you should take a video of any suspicious movements on your smartphone and show it to your doctor. In the early stages of parkinson's disease, dys-kinesias are only seen when the

Levodopa dose is very high. But in more advanced stages, they may be seen at lower doses and giving the patient an adequate dose of levodopa without producing dyskinesias may become diffi cult. At this stage, some dyskinesias may need to be tolerated. If you are suff ering from dyskinesias, you can reduce the dose of levodopa that you are

Taking. But this may result in some of the symptoms of parkinson's disease (slowness, rigidity, freezing etc) to reappear. Another way in which dyskinesias may be reduced is by giving you amantadine.


12. I am getting it now, doctor. This is like a weighing scale isn't it? too little levodopa causes the parkinson's disease symptoms to come back, and too much levodopa action causes dyskinesias.
Yes! th at is absolutely right. In the initial stages, balancing this weighing scale is very easy. But after 10, 15 or in some cases 20 years, balancing this scale becomes diffi cult. After taking levodopa, many patients improve but also get dyskinesias. It becomes impossible to fi nd a levodopa dose that causes improvement without producing dyskinesias. Th erefore, at this stage, some dyskinesias may need to be tolerated as long as you are able to function satisfactorily.


13. So doctor, you told me what happens when there is too much dopamine action in the brain. What if the there is too little dopamine action in the brain? What if levodopa just stops working?
Levodopa never stops working. But it may become less effective, and its effect may become short-lived. Th ere could be many reasons for levodopa to become less eff ective. These are listed separately the most important reason is that the patient may not be taking the levodopa on an empty stomach. As parkinson's disease advances, the eff ect of levodopa lasts for a shorter duration of time. Here is a somewhat typical story from such a patient. Remember, this happens only in few cases:
Taking the tablet helps me only for a short time. When I wake up in the morning, my feet contract, twist and become painful.


14. I understand. It must be difficult at that stage to find the right combination of medications. What if the situation worsens further?
Yes. And I think it is vital for patients to understand this. Frequently, with the right combination of medications the patient can get better. But it can take some time to find the right combination; sometimes even 3-4 trials of diff erent combinations may be required. If a patient gives up hope and gives up in the middle of these trials, the only possible outcome is progressive deterioration of the patient's health.

Sometimes, inspite of repeated adjustments, a good combination of medications cannot be found. But remember this situation arises 10-20 years after the parkinson's symptoms have been detected. Many parkinson's

Patients do not have to face this situation. If the right combination of medicines could not be found even after many trials, then still there is one solution. Brain surgery. Th en I take my morning dose of levodopa

And feel good. Sometimes I get some dyskinesias, but I don't complain about them because I am feeling good. But only an hour or 1.5 hours later, the symptoms of parkinson's disease start coming back. I become slower and slower, and then freeze. I get better again when I take levodopa, but I can't keep taking levodopa every hour!

I understand. It must be difficult at that stage to fi nd the right combination of medications. What if the situation worsens further?

Yes. And I think it is vital for patients to understand this. Frequently, with the right combination of medications the patient can get better. But it can take some time to fi nd the right combination; sometimes

Even 3-4 trials of different combinations may be required. If a patient gives up hope and gives up in the middle of these trials, the only possible outcome is progressive deterioration of the patient's health. Sometimes, inspite of repeated adjustments, a good combination of medications cannot be found. But remember this situation arises 10-20 years after the parkinson's symptoms have been detected. Many parkinson's patients do not have to face this situation. If the right combination of medicines could not be found even after many trials, then still there is one solution. Brain surgery. A proper mixture of medications may help this situation as well. I had given you an
Example of this earlier: entacapone can prolong the eff ect of levodopa.


15. Doctor. Brain surgery? are you kidding me? this is a big deal. By the way, what is this surgery called?
I know brain surgery is a big deal. This surgery is called deep brain stimulation, or this is a brain surgery, but a relatively dbs

If your symptoms are well controlled with medications, no doctor in their right mind would recommend you to have surgery. But in a few patients, medications no longer produce adequate improvement. Either the improvement lasts for a very short time, or the medication produces such dramatic dyskinesias that giving an adequate dose is impossible.

Approximately, 70% of such patients benefit from this surgery. The improvement is very significant, but dbs does not make all symptoms of parkinson's disease magically disappear. It is very important to have realistic expectations from the surgery. The improvement seen after surgery is batteries last for about 5 years, and can be Replaced when required.


16. Well. How is this surgery done?
This is a brain surgery, but a relatively minor one. A metal frame is usually attached to the patient's head. A very small hole (approximately 1 cm in diameter) is made in the head, and a thin (1 to 1.5 mm thick) wire is inserted through it. The wire is pushed into a very particular part of the brain called the sub-thalamic nucleus. Th e same process is repeated on the other side and another small wire is inserted. These wires are then connected to a small battery (a square of approx. 3 inch) that is kept in the skin below the chest. No part of this device can be seen from the outside, and any scars on the head are usually covered by hair in a few weeks. Th e device is usually turned on 4 weeks after the surgery. On an average, most.


17. I see. Doctor, does DBS cure all symptoms of parkinson's disease?
No. DBS surgery improves only those symptoms which improve after levodopa.

- Dbs surgery prolongs the eff ect of levodopa, decreases dyskinesias, improves slowness of movement, hand shaking, muscle stiff ness and in general makes the patient much more functional. However, symptoms that do not get better after levodopa such as freezing and falling usually do not get better after dbs.

- Approximately 5% of patients can have serious complications such as stroke, seizure and infection. But most of these problems are cured with medications. Only 1% of these patients have permanent problems from these complications, such as permanent weakness of one side of the body. Other symptoms that we talked about e. G. Sleep problems may get better after dbs. I conducted an audit of sleep symptoms after dbs during my time in london at king's college hospital, and found that there is

Significant, but non-dramatic, improvement in many patients.

Two problems can become worse after DBS:
(i) Severe psychiatric problems such as severe depression and hallucinations and
(ii) Severe diffi culties of thinking and memory. If any of these problems are severe, dbs is usually not off ered to the patient. If a patient has severe psychiatric problems and is under treatment, dbs may be considered in the future if they completely resolve.


18. Okay doctor, what are the risks of this surgery?
Th ere is a small amount of risk involved in any surgery. Since dbs surgery is relatively minor, the risk is low but is not non- existent.
- The risk of death is less than 1%
- Approximately 5% of patients can have serious complications such as stroke, seizure and infection. But most of these problems are cured with medications. Only 1% of these patients have permanent problems from these complications, such as permanent weakness of one side of the body.
- A few patients have minor problems such as problems in wire connections or a non-functioning battery. Th ese are easily corrected. In short, about almost 90-95% of patient do not have any complications during or after the surgery, and the risk of death or permanent problems is very small (lts 2%).


19. Can the doctor guarantee a significant benefi t after DBS surgery?
No. No doctor in the world can guarantee Improvement after dbs. Th at being said, improvement happens in most patients as long as they are carefully selected. Before off ering you option of surgery, the doctor will give you a large dose of levodopa and make sure that your symptoms improve significantly. He/she will tell you that this is the maximum benefit that you may get after dbs, and try to set realistic expectations so that you are not disappointed after the surgery. Often the surgery is followed by a period of temporary improvement, even before the battery is switched on. This improvement Goes away in a few weeks. Th is is expected and you should not be disappointed - this is a good sign. After the battery is switched on, it may take between 3-6 months to achieve the optimal balance between your dbs and medications. During this time, your symptoms will improve gradually. But you should be patient if your symptoms

Have not improved within 1-2 months there is a good chance they will improve with further dbs adjustments. Most patients improve after dbs surgery, but a few people do not improve. Th e reason why these people do not benefit from dbs surgery is unknown, and this is being vigorously researched in the us, uk and other countries. Read more here

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