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Health Care

Neurodegenerative Disorders and Pain: Short Answer Problems – Session 4

Alzheimer Disease

Is this a cancerous, inflammatory, or infectious disease?

Alzheimer’s is a neurodegenerative inflammatory disease characterized by cognitive decline. The condition activates neuronal cell death due to the formation of hyperphosphorylated tau protein and amyloid-β plagues that subsequently lead to progressive dementia (Banasik, 2021). It slowly destroys thinking skills and the brain’s memory while inflammation is present in an Alzheimer’s patient’s brain making him unable to carry out the simplest routine tasks.

What are the cardinal symptoms of the late stage?

The key symptom of Alzheimer’s is memory loss which includes difficulty remembering conversations, past events, people’s names, and difficulty organizing thoughts. People having Alzheimer’s symptoms forget conversations, repeat their statements, have trouble finding the right words and expressions for everyday objects, put their possessions in illogical places, and then forget the things or the places where they have put them before (Banasik, 2021).

What pathophysiology is causing those symptoms?

The presence of core pathologies of sustained immune response, neurofibrillary tangles, and amyloid-β plagues in the brain are responsible for causing neurodegenerative disorder are responsible for causing Alzheimer’s disease symptoms. This inflammatory disorder causes the brain of Alzheimer’s patient to shrink that subsequently causes the brain cells to die leading to dementia- a state of continuous decline of social and behavioral skills as well as thinking ability.

Parkinson Disease

Is this a cancerous, inflammatory, or infectious disease?

Parkinson’s Disease is a neurodegenerative inflammatory disorder occurred in the brain of a person that is characterized by the progressive reduction of dopaminergic neurons and degeneration of the substantia nigra pars compacta whose prominent function is motor control. The area of substantia nigra is responsible to produce Dopamine in the brain that transmits signals between two brain parts for coordinating the activity (Banasik, 2021).

What are the cardinal symptoms?

The cardinal symptoms of Parkinson’s disease are shaking, difficulty with balance, uncontrollable movements, stiffness, postural instability, difficulty with coordination, and unintended disability.

What pathophysiology is causing those symptoms?

The pathophysiology of Parkinson’s disease refers to the gradual loss of dopaminergic neurons in the pars compacta of the brain that affects several regions including the olfactory tubercle, elements of the peripheral nervous system, and the pigmented nuclei in the brainstem and midbrain, and the cerebral cortex (Banasik, 2021).

Multiple Sclerosis

Is this a cancerous, inflammatory, or infectious disease?

Multiple Sclerosis is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the Central Nervous System (CNS) of the brain characterized by multifocal scattered of CNS leading to axonal damage in the brain of a patient. This disorder is mainly caused due to genetic, environmental, and exogenous factors.

What pathophysiology is causing the varying and transient symptoms?

Multiple Sclerosis is characterized pathologically by neuro-axonal damage, demyelination, inflammation, and gliosis due to the development of focal inflammatory lesions. The unintended trafficking of leukocytes to the patient’s brain is due to secondary axonal damage. This damage results in a range of symptoms disrupting the communicative ability, double vision, trouble with sensation, blindness in one eye, trouble with coordination, and visual, sensory, and motor problems in the patient’s brain.

Briefly Describe the cause and type of symptoms observed with each of the following types of pain:

  1. Neuropathic

People with symptoms of neuropathic pain may experience constant burning or shooting pain that occurs intermittently and gets worse over time. Some may experience muscle cramping, numbness, bone degeneration, weakness, extreme sensitivity to light, touch, and sound, loss of reflexes, urinary incontinence, and tingling sensation. This pain may be caused due to a number of reasons including alcohol abuse, vitamin B deficiency, rheumatoid arthritis, infectious diseases such as leprosy, HIV, etc., and diabetes.

  1. Ischemic

The possible causes of Ischemic pain are vaginal childbirth, side effects of medication, and when a foreign body is inserted into the urethra of a person. The symptoms of this pain include fast heartbeat, sweating, back pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, neck pain, shortness of breath, nausea, foot pain, and peripheral arterial insufficiency (Banasik, 2021).

  1. Referred

Referred chest pain includes symptoms that can be felt in the shoulders, jaw, and teeth due to the blockage in coronary arteries that ultimately can lead to triggering a heart attack. The causes include tumors, radiating pain from a spinal segment, infections, etc. Banasik (2021) mentions that people may experience sharp pain and the dull ache that goes from the neck to under their shoulder blades.


Banasik, J. L. (2021). Pathophysiology. (7th ed.). Elsevier Health Sciences. US.



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