When his doctors asked Samuel Jones to rate his back and spine pain on a scale from 1 to 10, he said it was 15 to 20. And it’s no surprise. Jones, a retired patent agent from Midland, Michigan, had had an operation to repair a ruptured disc in 1974 with no further problems. Then, when he came back in 2014 from a wonderful vacation with his family in Hawaii, everything was different.
“I went from a little pain now and then to excruciating pain,” Jones says. He couldn’t walk without help. He couldn’t go up or down stairs. To make matters worse, it was hard to diagnose his problem because his previous quadruple bypass and pacemaker prevented an MRI. Continue reading →
Sleep is crucial for our health and well-being, and research shows this. Most adults need 7 to 9 hours every day to function properly, but many people don’t get all they need. In celebration of World Sleep Day, March 18, 2016, the University of Michigan Sleep Disorders Center is offering a few tips to help you get a good night’s sleep.
Instead of counting sheep, look at how you may be sabotaging your sleep and then strive to change your habits.
The University of Michigan’s multidisciplinary neuroscience team is made up of more than 70 nationally recognized neurologists and neurosurgeons. Leading the way in brain, spine and nervous system care for close to 100 years, patients have access to services that can be found at only a handful of places as well as cutting-edge treatments with the latest research. Neurology and Neurosurgery at the University of Michigan Health System have been recognized by U.S. News & World Report numerous times for excellence in patient care.
If you have neuropathy—a disease of one or more peripheral nerves that causes numbness, pain and even weakness—you’ll be happy to know that there is help within reach and possibly factors within your control.
There are six main causes of neuropathy, which is now the second main neurological condition, after headache: 1. Diabetes is the most common cause of neuropathy Diabetes causes about half of all neuropathies. Even pre-diabetes is of concern to physicians because it leads so often to diabetes.
Treatment of the diabetes can slow down the progression of neuropathy—and also help people with all the other things that diabetes can affect, like eyesight, kidney problems, strokes and heart attacks.
If you have diabetes or pre-diabetes, diet and exercise will benefit you greatly. Continue reading →
Heather Hawkins enjoys as normal a life as she can, while dealing with a rare condition called ARSACS.
Every time he treats a patient with a rare condition, Vikram Shakkottai is reminded that these rare diseases might affect more people than we think.
The neurologist and director of the University of Michigan Health System’s Ataxia Clinic has seen a spectrum of symptoms from one patient to the next who have the same diagnoses. It’s why he believes advancing research and genetic testing is so important.
Dr. Shakkottai pursued genetic testing with patient Heather Hawkins, who came to see him a few years ago to talk about trouble keeping her balance. Continue reading →
In her third trimester, Aimee Garrison finally became convinced the soreness and tension across her shoulder blades and into her back had to be more than just part of being pregnant.
“I had been running and lifting weights all the way up to 26 weeks,” the marathoner from Kalamazoo says, “so I slowed down, but it didn’t get better. Soon I was having trouble sleeping and keeping up with my toddler.”
Eventually, an MRI revealed Aimee was one of the less than 2,000 adults each year who find out they have a spinal cord ependymoma. A tumor the size of a baby carrot had been slowly growing in Aimee’s spinal cord, pushing her spinal cord against her vertebrae. Continue reading →
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