Dr. Pappas’ treatment of a wide range of neurological problems spans two decades in the Brunswick area. His expert care provides solutions for seizure disorders, stroke, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, neuropathy, Alzheimer’s disease, Bell’s palsy, trigeminal neuralgia and more. Call us today for more information about the neurological conditions Dr. Pappas treats.

Following is information about just some of the conditions we can treat.

Headaches

Headaches affect approximately 26 million Americans. Dr. Pappas specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of all headaches, including migraine, tension, cluster, and injury-related.

We offer many treatments for the resolution headaches and can develop a treatment plan to decrease the frequency and severity of your headaches. Dr. Pappas and our caring staff want to help you find real answers about the cause of your headaches and to develop a treatment plan that addresses your specific needs.

Seizure Disorders

Seizures present with a wide variety of symptoms, depending on what part of the brain is affected. Some seizures can loss of consciousness with twitching and shaking, while other seizures cause only “staring” spells. These “absence” seizures are sometimes difficult to notice. Some seizures can cause temporary abnormal sensations or visual disturbances.

There are several different classifications of seizures. With simple seizures, there is no change in level of consciousness. With complex seizures, there is a change in the level of consciousness. Generalized seizures affect the whole body, while focal seizures affect just one part or side of the body.

Not all seizures are epileptic. Epilepsy is a chronic disorder with recurrent seizures. Other conditions that can initiate a seizure include high temperature (especially in children), low blood sugar, dehydration, infection, stroke, and brain tumors.

Stroke

If you or someone in your care has suffered a stroke, you should know that it is a medical emergency and you should seek immediate care at a hospital emergency room, with follow-up treatment with a neurologist.

A stroke is an interruption of the blood supply to any part of the brain. There are many different kinds of stroke and medical care is very important. Visit a neurologist like Dr. Pappas with the experience and training to look for specific neurologic, motor, and sensory deficits and order specific tests to help confirm the type of stroke and to make determinations for further treatment.

Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson's disease is a disorder of the brain characterized by shaking (tremor) and difficulty with walking, movement, and coordination. The disease is associated with damage to a part of the brain that is involved with movement.

Only your physician can assess and recommend treatment for this condition. While there is no known cure for Parkinson’s, Dr. Pappas can tailor a treatment program to the individual patient to control the symptoms.

Neck and Back Pain

Your spinal cord runs from the neck down through the lumbar spine, conducting messages from nerves throughout the body to the brain. There are many causes of neck and back pain, including trauma or injury and tumors.The spinal column is divided into segments: the cervical spine (neck), the thoracic spine (the mid back) and the lumbar spine (low back). The vertebra of the spinal column are separated by disks that consist of a gelatinous substance designed to provide cushioning to the spinal column. These disks may move out of their place or “rupture”.

Nerve roots (large nerves that branch out from the spinal cord) may become compressed, resulting in neurological symptom, such as sensory or motor changes. Disk herniations or strain/sprain to the spine result in pain that can range from mild to debilitating. Dr. Pappas may order an MRI scan of the portion of the back that is affected. EMG/NCS may also be ordered to assess for nerve damage. Dr. Pappas may design a treatment program consisting of medications, physical therapy, and possibly injections to help relieve these conditions.

Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease that affects the brain and spinal cord, or the central nervous system. MS is a progressive disease believed to result from damage to the protective material that surrounds nerve cells. Inflammation destroys the protective sheath and leaves multiple areas of scar tissue. The inflammation causes nerve impulses to slow down or become blocked, and this causes the symptoms of MS. There can be repeated episodes of inflammation along any area of the brain and spinal cord. Episodes can last days, weeks, or months and will alternate with times of reduced or no symptoms. There is no known cure for MS at this point; however, Dr. Pappas can prescribe a variety of medications with the goal of slowing down the symptoms and maintaining a good quality of life.

Neuropathy and Nerve Damage

Peripheral neuropathy is a failure of the nerves that carry information to and from the brain and spinal cord. This produces pain, loss of sensation, and inability to control muscles. Neuropathy cannot always be determined by a specific cause. Risk factors include diabetes, alcohol use, and hereditary factors. The goal of treatment is to identify and treat the underlying cause and to improve the patient’s daily function. A combination of physical and occupational therapy along with medications may help relieve some of the symptoms of neuropathy.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome is compression of the median nerve at the wrist, which may result in numbness, tingling, weakness, or muscle atrophy in the hand and fingers. The patient may also complain of waking up and having to “shake the hand out” to relieve some of the symptoms of tingling and numbness. Dr. Pappas can check for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome with EMG/NCS done in our office. There are a variety of treatments, including medication, injections into the carpal tunnel, wrist splints, and for severe cases, a surgical procedure called carpal tunnel release.

Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer's disease (AD), one form of dementia, is a progressive, degenerative brain disease. It affects memory, thinking, and behavior. When a physician is diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease, he will establish that dementia is present and what type. This will be clarified with history by a family member, a physical exam, and a mental status evaluation. Tests may be ordered to determine if there is a treatable condition that may be contributing to the dementia, such as thyroid disease, brain tumor, drug or medication interactions, chronic infection, anemia, severe depression, or thyroid disease. Dr. Pappas can work with the family in the use of medications designed to slow the progression of the disease and assist the family in lifestyle changes for the patient.

Bell’s Palsy

Bell's palsy is a disorder caused by damage to cranial nerve VII, involving sudden facial drooping and decreased ability to move the face. This disorder involves the nerve that controls movement of the muscles of the face. Symptoms can include pain behind the ear, facial drooping, weakened facial muscles, inability to close the eye on the affected side, stiffness of the facial muscles, and the face may feel pulled to one side. Treatment is geared toward reducing the symptoms. Corticosteroids may help with the swelling and inflammation of the nerve. In most people, the condition will resolve on its own in weeks or possibly months.

Trigeminal Neuralgia

Trigeminal neuralgia is an extremely painful inflammation of the trigeminal nerve, which causes severe lightning-like facial pain on the involved side. These painful attacks may occur after light touching of different areas of the face or chewing, or they may occur spontaneously.Specific medicines can be helpful in reducing the frequency and severity of the attacks.