We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Neurological Deficit?

Mary McMahon
By
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
The Health Board is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At The Health Board, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A neurological deficit is a functional impairment caused by a problem with the brain. Some examples can include weakness on one side of the body, loss of coordination, and slurred speech. Any injury involving the brain can lead to neurological deficits and patients can also be born with impairments, the result of problems with fetal development. Treatment is available, depending on the nature of the issue.

The brain uses a complex series of circuits to convey information for handling everything from logic to walking. If a problem develops along a circuit, the body may not function normally. In a person with this kind of deficit, either a signal does not get through at all, or the brain garbles it, and errors occur. With voluntary movements, this can result in uncontrolled or weak movement, and for involuntary movements and reflexes, it can mean that something does not happen at all, or that the patient experiences spasms while trying to do things like breathing.

A stroke can be a cause of a neurological deficit, as can tumors, degenerative brain diseases, and head injuries. Often, these functional problems are the first warning sign of a problem with the brain, and they may onset gradually. Someone could start experiencing low-level clumsiness that, over time, turns into more serious problems, like being unable to walk, having trouble controlling the hands for even simple movements, and difficulty speaking and swallowing.

When a patient appears to have a neurological deficit, medical imaging can be useful for locating damage in the brain and finding out which pathways are not working properly. A doctor can also conduct a physical examination, asking a patient to move the involved part of the body and noting how well the patient can function. The doctor can determine the source of the neurological deficit and start developing a treatment plan. This could include addressing the root cause, like surgery to remove a brain tumor, as well as things like physical therapy to improve functioning and skills.

Progressive neurological deficits can become disabling. A patient who cannot recover may require assistance from an aide or personal assistant as some tasks become more difficult. Some problems, like difficulty swallowing, can also present a health risk; patients may be at increased risk of aspirating on food or vomit, and could develop complications like pneumonia. It is important to evaluate a patient regularly to check for early warning signs of secondary issues to make sure the patient gets treatment in a timely fashion.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a The Health Board researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments

By julies — On Nov 03, 2011

The effects of a stroke can certainly cause neurologic deficit symptoms. My mom has a history of strokes, and at first they were just small ones that really didn't impair her much.

The doctor said with these smaller strokes there was reversible ischemic neurological deficit and she was able to carry on with her normal activities.

When she suffered from a major stroke, there were definite changes that are so frustrating for her. The stroke mainly affected the left side of her body.

She has trouble walking and has a big fear of falling because it is hard for her to get around. Her speech has also been affected somewhat.

She is still able to talk and carry on a conversation, but if she gets excited or upset, it is much harder to understand her.

It can be so frustrating when you want to be able to do something, but the signals just don't get to your brain.

Mary McMahon

Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Learn more
The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.