4 Months of Summer

And I mean summer by calendar definition, since we've probably had about a week in total of good weather. So, four months of summer- my last long summer ever until I grow old and retire or decide to take time out of my medical career. I would say they've flown by in a haze of … Continue reading 4 Months of Summer

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Dementia

Before I started medical school I volunteered at a nursing home full of elderly people with dementia. It was honestly heart-breaking. I would go in and introduce myself to the same people every Saturday. There was this one lady who would always tell me about the buttons on her cardigan and how she didn't like her … Continue reading Dementia

Neurofibromatosis

Neurofibromatosis Definition: an autosomal dominant genetic disorder affecting cells of neural crest origin (e.g. melanocytes, craniofacial cartilage and bone, smooth muscle, peripheral and enteric neurones and glia), resulting in development of multiple neurocutaneous tumours. Type 1 neurofibromatosis (NF1, von Recklinghausen's disease)- characterised by peripheral and spinal neurofibromas, multiple café-au-lait spots, freckling, optic nerve glioma, Lisch … Continue reading Neurofibromatosis

Wernicke’s Encephalopathy

Wernicke's Encephalopathy Definition: Thiamine deficiency with a classical triad of confusion, ataxia, and ophthalmoplegia. Aetiology/ risk factors: -Thiamine (Vitamin B1) deficiency -inadequate dietary intake -reduced GI absorption -impaired utilisation = focal areas of brain damage, including periaqueductal punctate haemorrhages -Often seen in chronic alcoholism -Also: eating disorders, malnutrition, prolonged vomiting e.g. with chemo, GI malignancy, … Continue reading Wernicke’s Encephalopathy

Hydrocephalus

 Hydrocephalus Definition: enlargement of the cerebral ventricular system. Subdivisable into obstructive and non-obstructive, or communicating and non-communicating. Aetiology/ risk factors: -Abnormal accumulation of CSF in the ventricles, leading to raised intracranial pressure, caused by: Impaired outflow of CSF from the ventricular system (obstructive/ non-communicating): -lesions of the third ventricle, fourth ventricle, cerebral aqueduct (inc. TB, neurocysticercosis) … Continue reading Hydrocephalus