Monday, February 12, 2018

Hemiplegia Evaluation : Case-related Clinical Pearls

Here's a couple of special pointers for a CNS Case with the Viva Questions asked commonly !

General Examination (In addition to what you would routinely mention)

- GCS / MMSE depending on status of the patient

- Regular Temperature, Pulse , Respiratory Rate and Blood Pressure.

(Pulse could have irregularly irregular rhythm which indicates Atrial Fibrillation. Very strong Etiological clue)

(Blood pressure is super important : to be brought down rapidly if Hemorrhagic suspected and to be brought down below 185/110 of planning to Thrombolyse.
Do not reduce to very low levels too rapidly to prevent damage to the Ischemic penumbra)

- Carotid Bruit : indicates Carotid artery stenosis due to Atherosclerosis. Before palpating for the carotid pulse always auscultate to rule out a Thrombus as you may dislodge it when you press it.

- Signs of Hyperlipidemia :
Xanthoma , Xanthelesma , Arcus Senilis , Locomotor Brachii

- Check for Bed Sores - will find in long term Hemiplegics

- Check for an Indwelling Catheter.

- Neurocutaneous markers :
(Cafe au lait for Neurofibromatosis , Shahgreen patches , Ash leaf macules for Tuberous Sclerosis, Port wine stain for Sturge Weber Syndrome)

After this perform the routine neurological examination.

Specific Questions that can be asked on Hemiplegia , and we must be aware of for exams (and for life) :

1. Elicit :
Any deep tendon reflex (Commonly Biceps , Triceps , Knee , Ankle)
Plantar Reflex (Babinski)

Glabellar tap
Jaw jerk
Facial Movements (7th nerve )
Gag reflex (Never forget to check for gag - it decides whether Ryles tube is needed or not and is super important to prevent Aspirations).
Extra Ocular movements
Tongue examination

2. Viva Questions :

A. Plegia vs Paresis?
Total paralysis = Plegia
Incomplete paralysis / Weakness = Paresis

B. What is Hemiplegia, Quadriplegia, Diplegia , Monoplegia , Cruciate Hemiplegia?
Diplegia = All 4 limbs involved but Lower Limb involved more than the upper.

Cruciate Hemiplegia= Upper limb of one side and lower limb of the other.
(I'm sure you know the others )

Complete Hemiplegia is when Facial involvement is present as well.

C. Hemiplegia vs Paraplegia site of lesions?
Hemiplegia is brainstem and above upto the cortex.
Paraplegia is spinal cord and below - upto the nerve.
(Paraplegia = Both lower limbs )

D. Rigidity vs Spasticity
- Lead pipe and Cogwheel Rigidity in Extra Pyramidal lesions like Parkinson's
- Clasp Knife Spasticity in UMN pyramidal tract lesion

E. UMN vs LMN lesions
(What is UMN ? What is LMN?)

F. Root values for all reflexes ?
(Deep + Superficial)

G. Plantar reflex components? What is a positive Babinski Sign? (5 components)

H. Causes of Babinksi positive other than Pyramidal tract lesions ?
(Deep sleep , Infancy , Coma.)

I. Alternatives to Elicit Babinski :
Gordon = Squeeze the Calves
Shaefer = Squeeze Tendoachilles
Oppenheim = Slide the knuckles down the tibial shaft
Chaddock = Strike along the medial aspect of the malleolus.

Hoffman Sign in Upperlimb

J. What is Jendrassik's maneuver ? What's its use?

K. Grades of Power ? (Should be pit pat)

L. Grades of Reflexes ? (In terms of + ++ +++ and ++++)

M. Causes of Hypo and Hypertonia?
Remember : Cerebellar disease causes Hypotonia

N. Clonus definition ?

O. What is Spinal Shock ?

P. Importance of aphasia ?
Wernicke vs Broca with area numbers ?
Conduction aphasia ?
How are these different from dysarthria?

Q. Know your blood supply : Anterior vs Posterior Circulation
- Middle Cerebral Artery - Superior vs Inferior Branch how to distinguish?
- Features of MCA territory stroke ?

R. Know Brainstem Syndromes names - the Crossed Hemiplegias.

Weber , Claude , Benedikt in Midbrain
Milliard Gubler and Foville in Pons
Medial and Lateral medullary Syndrome in Medulla.

S. Frontal lobe lesion features ! Especially Frontal release signs can be asked - Palmar grasp , Palmomental reflex , glabellar tap.
What is Gegenhalten phenomenon?

T. Then if you answer some of these they'll ask Management!
In that Basic Routine Ix. Don't forget Bloor Sugars and ECG.
NCCT best initial (Non contrast CT Scan)
Diffusion weighted MRI is very accurate for localisation!

U. Thrombolysis can ask everything about !
rTPA 0.9 mg/kg 

V. BP control in stroke - Which agents ? Target BP ? How to Reduce?

W. Raised ICT management?

X. What drugs would the patient be on life long ?
Aspirin and Statins

Y. Neuroprotective agents , name a few?
Citicholine , Piracetam , Adavarone

Hope this was a good list !
Do message on the Medicowesome Group or comment down below if any answers are needed or you have doubts !
Happy studying!
Stay awesome.

~ A.P. Burkholderia.

1 comment:

  1. Why there is absent superficial abdominal reflex in hemiplegia?


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