Neurology Terms


- paralysis or plegia = loss of voluntary muscle control

- paresis = partial paralysis = weakness of voluntary muscle activity

- hypermetria = exaggerated protraction & retraction of the limb during gait (goose-step limb movement)

- ataxia = malposition of foot-fall placement during gait

- intention tremor = involuntary oscillation of body parts during posture or movement (body swaying; head/neck oscillation)

- nystagmus = repetitive eye oscillation, movement slowly away from center gaze then more quickly back to center. (Vestibular nystagmus is a reflex response to imbalanced vestibular input, resulting from normal head acceleration or from a unilateral lesions.)

- opisthotonus = severe persistent dorsally arched head and back, can result from cerebellar cortical damage or strychnine poisoning. (opisthotonus = Gr. "drawn backward")

- neuromodulation = refers to the relatively prolonged excitatory or inhibitory influence of certain agents (acetycholine, norepinephrine, dopamine, or serotonin) on neuronal circuits. Most neuromodulation nuclei are found in the midbrain and pons. The nuclei are small, but axons from the nuclei are highly branched and widely distributed to broad regions of brain and spinal cord. (Substantia nigra dopamine modulation is essential for movements to occur.)

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