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The Nervous System
Transcript of The Nervous System
The peripheral nervous system consists of many nerves and controls the sensory and motor functions within the body. This system connects the central nervous system to limbs and organs of the body. The central and peripheral nervous systems work together so that as humans, we can do things like walk and swat mosquitoes. Grabbing a cup of coffee, feeling the heat of the mug, making the decision to wait to drink the coffee then finally being able to drink and digest it are all examples of what the nervous system does. It can be broken down into the somatic and autonomic nervous systems.
What is the nervous system?
The cerebrum activates our imagination, our senses and our ability to think. The cerebellum is where we get our balance, our motion and our ability to learn new things (such as a baby learning to walk). The medulla is where our body creates involuntary actions such as food digestion and heartbeat.
Central Nervous System
Diseases of the Nervous System
There are many diseases that attack the nervous system. Here are a few:
What is Parkinson's Disease?
Associated with aging
Develops slowly and gradually over time
Sypmtoms aren't always noticeable
Most noticeable is a tremor
stiffness and a slowing of movement
slower facial expressions
Loss of automatic movement
Change in Speech
Change in Writing
The brain is the control center of the body. It is responsible for a variety of functions including receiving and processing sensory information, thinking, perceiving, producing and understanding language, and controlling motor function.
All of our senses are controlled by this system. To fully understand the purpose of this system, we first need to understand the brain.
Peripheral Nervous System
Certain environmental factors can trigger the disease
Who's more likely to get it?
-Having a relative with the disease increases your chances of developing it
-Older people are more likely to develop it than younger people
This system is responsible for sending, receiving, and interpreting information from all parts of the body. The nervous system monitors and coordinates internal organ function and responds to changes in the external environment. This system can be divided into two parts: the central nervous system and the peripheral nervous system.
The Spinal Cord
The spinal cord is a cylindrical shaped bundle of nerve fibers that is connected to the brain. The spinal cord runs down the center of the protective spinal column extending from the neck to the lower back. Spinal cord nerves transmit information from body organs and external stimuli to the brain and send information from the brain to other areas of the body. The nerves of the spinal cord are grouped into bundles of nerve fibers that travel in two pathways. Ascending nerve tracts carry sensory information from the body to the brain. Descending nerve tracts send information pertaining to motor function from the brain to the rest of the body.
Neurons are the basic unit of the nervous system. All cells of the nervous system are comprised of neurons. Axons and dendrites are bundled together into what are called nerves. These nerves send signals between the brain, spinal cord, and other body organs via nerve impulses. Neurons are classified as either motor, sensory, or interneurons. Motor neurons carry information from the central nervous system to organs, glands, and muscles. Sensory neurons send information to the central nervous system from internal organs or from external stimuli. Interneurons relay signals between motor and sensory neurons.
The nervous system has three basic functions:
sensory neurons receive information from the sensory receptors
interneurons transfer and interpret impulses
motor neurons send appropriate impulses/instructions to the muscles and glands.
What is Neurology?
Neurology is the branch of medicine that is concerned with the study and treatment of disorders of the nervous system.
The physician who specializes in neurology is called a neurologist. After completing medical school, physicians specializing in adult neurology complete one year of residency in internal medicine and three years of neurology residency.
Neurologists treat disorders of the brain, spinal cord and nerves.
Who is a Neurologist?
Treatments of The Nervous System
Neurological tests to evaluate patients may include:
computerized tomography (CT ) or computer assisted tomography (CAT) scans -- forms of radiology or imaging that use computers to construct two-dimensional pictures of selected parts of the body. Dye may be injected into a vein to obtain a better picture.
electroencephalogram (EEG) -- a procedure that records the brain's continuous electrical activity by means of electrodes attached to the scalp.
magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) -- an advanced method of imaging the brain using a very strong magnet, without radiation.
electromyogram (EMG) -- a procedure that measures and records electrical activity from the muscles and nerves with mild electrical shocks to stimulate the nerves.
arteriogram (angiogram) -- a procedure that provides a scan of arteries going to and through the brain.
cerebral spinal fluid analysis (spinal tap) -- a procedure used to make an evaluation or diagnosis by examining the fluid withdrawn from the spinal column.
Depending on which Nervous System disease or disorder you have, treatment will also vary. For example, there is no cure for Parkinson's disease but there is treatment to control the symptoms.
Medications used to treat movement-related symptoms of Parkinson's disease include:
Levodopa (L-dopa), Sinemet, levodopa and carbidopa (Atamet)
Pramipexole (Mirapex), ropinirole (Requip), bromocriptine (Parlodel)
Selegiline (Eldepryl, Deprenyl), rasagiline (Azilect)
Amantadine or anticholinergic medications to reduce early or mild tremors
- Only one bad gene
- Need two bad genes
- Family History
-- African Americans
-- Age 65 and 85
- Multiple Sclerosis
-- 1 in 750
-- 1 in 40
Maintaining a Healthy Nervous System
- Bad Habits
- Good Habits
What is the somatic nervous system?
The somatic nervous system controls skeletal muscle as well as external sensory organs such as the skin. This system is said to be voluntary because the responses can be controlled consciously. Reflex reactions of skeletal muscle however are an exception. These are involuntary reactions to external stimuli.
What is the autonomic nervous system?
The autonomic nervous system controls involuntary muscles, such as smooth and cardiac muscle. This system is also called the involuntary nervous system. The autonomic nervous system can further be divided into the parasympathetic and sympathetic divisions.
Sympathetic - controls activities that increase energy expenditures.
Parasympathetic - controls activities that conserve energy expenditures.
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