Description

What is Neurology?
Neurology is the study of the nervous system (brain, spinal cord and nerves), how it controls various parts of the body and the diseases and disorders that may affect it.
 
The brain co-ordinates how we think and what we do physically as well as controlling how the body manages itself.  It sends messages to, and receives information from, the rest of the body via a complex system of nerves which use chemicals and electricity to send information.
 
The nervous system can be divided into the
  • voluntary nervous system which controls what we choose to do, and the
  • involuntary or autonomic nervous system that controls automatic functions that we don’t have to think about.
 A medical specialist in this field is a neurologist.  A neurosurgeon is a surgeon who operates on parts of the nervous system.  The two specialists often work together, depending on the problem.

Consultants

Hours

8am - 5pm

Referral Expectations

Outpatient Clinics 

Neurology Outpatient Clinics are held at Greenlane Clinical Centre.

Your GP will refer you to see a neurologist if they think you have a problem that involves the nervous system and that needs specialist help in diagnosing or treating that condition. You will see either a neurologist or a neurology registrar (a doctor training to become a specialist and who is under the supervision of a neurologist).
 
Waiting times for clinics range from 1 day - 6 months depending on the urgency of your condition. This is assessed from the letter or phone call we receive from your GP.
 
Before coming to our clinic you may be asked to undergo some tests or these tests will be arranged after your appointment with the neurologist.  These are listed below in detail. Clinic appointments last 30-60 minutes.
 
A history of your symptoms will be taken as well as a review of any medications you are on (so please bring these with you).  The doctor may also review any old notes and previous problems you have had.
 
You will then be examined which may include a general examination as well as an examination of the nervous system.  An examination of the brain and nerves may include testing your memory and concentration as well as other aspects of thinking processes.  It also involves examining how well the nerves to your head and body are working.  You may have further testing to establish the diagnosis.
 
The specialist or registrar will discuss with you the possible diagnosis and what further tests or treatments are recommended.  They will correspond with your GP about your diagnosis, results of tests and a treatment plan.  You may have ongoing follow-up in our clinic or be discharged back to the care of your GP. 
 
As part of the neurology team we have a neuropsychologist who is an expert in assessing the thinking function of the brain.  Their assessment may be requested to help the neurologist make a diagnosis or to help plan treatment.
 
You may also be referred to a physiotherapist or occupational therapist.  A physiotherapist provides physical therapy to assist with any disability you have.  An occupational therapist reviews what equipment/advice will assist in activities of daily living if you have a disability. 
 
In some cases you may require admission to hospital for treatment or testing. 

Procedures / Treatments

  • Electroencephalogram (EEG)

    An EEG is a test to detect abnormalities in the electrical activity of the brain.  Cells in the brain communicate with each other via electrical activity.… More

  • Nerve Conduction Studies (NCS)

    NCS are tests of the speed of conduction of impulses through a nerve.  The tests will be performed by a doctor, sometimes with a technician.… More

  • Electromyography (EMG)

    EMG is a test that assesses disorders of muscles and the nerves controlling them.… More

  • Lumbar Puncture (LP)

    Cerebral Spinal Fluid (CSF) is the fluid that surrounds the brain and spinal cord.  It is often helpful when diagnosing certain conditions to examine this fluid for cells and chemicals/proteins.  A lumbar puncture allows the doctor to examine the content and pressure of this fluid.… More

  • Radiology


    Computer Tomography (CT)
    A CT image is created by using an X-ray beam, which is sent through the body from different angles giving cross-sectional images of the body.… More

  • Epilepsy

    Epilepsy is a condition where people have seizures or ‘fits’.  Seizures may present in many forms but are due to bursts of electrical activity within the brain.  These bursts can occur due to an underlying structural lesion, such as a scar, or they can occur in an otherwise completely normal… More

  • Parkinson's Disease

    Parkinson's disease is a disorder of the brain characterised by shaking (tremor), slowing of movement and difficulty with walking and coordination.… More PDF

  • Headaches/Migraines

    Migraine headaches are repeated or recurrent headaches, often accompanied by other symptoms.… More

  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

    Multiple sclerosis is a progressive disease involving the brain and spinal cord.  It occurs over time in multiple sites in these two areas of the nervous system.… More

  • Motor Neurone Disease (MND)

    This refers to a group of progressive disorders where there is destruction of motor neurones (the nerves that control voluntary muscle activity such as speaking, walking, breathing, and swallowing.)  Symptoms include: gradual weakening, shrinking of muscles and uncontrollable twitching of the muscles.  Sensation, memory and personality are not usually affected.… More

  • Neurogenetics Clinic

    The adult Neurogenetics Clinic was established in 2003 to serve the needs of patients with inherited neurological diseases.… More

Contact Details

Auckland City Hospital

Central Auckland

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Greenlane Clinical Centre

Central Auckland

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This page was last updated at 1:43PM on May 17, 2017. This information is reviewed and edited by Auckland DHB Neurology.