What Is a Child Neurologist?
A child neurologist, or pediatric neurologist, is a doctor that deals with diseases and conditions that affect the nervous system. For example, if your child has seizures, delayed speech, poor muscle tone, or frequent headaches, your pediatrician may ask a neurologist for an evaluation.
A pediatric or child neurologist is a neurologist that treats children. This type of neurologist has a specialty in dealing with children from birth to young adulthood. In addition to a four-year medical degree, a pediatric neurologist usually has had three or more years of training in child neurology. The American Board of Pediatrics certifies child neurologists.
In some cases, child neurologists may work as part of a team with your child’s primary care doctor and a developmental pediatrician to develop a treatment plan for your child if he has some difficult or serious medical concerns. Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD or autism) may see a child neurologist, in order to deal with sensory issues or behavioral issues associated with autism.
What Does a Child Neurologists Do?
Child neurologists diagnose and treat a variety of conditions. Neurologists deal with children who have seizures, head injuries, or muscle weakness. They also develop treatment plans and help manage the care of children that have disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder(ADHD) and autism. Children that have developmental disorders, such as speech delays, fine and gross motor delays, and coordination issues, may also see a neurologist. A neurologist may also treat children who have learning disabilities or learning delays.
Sometimes, a developmental doctor may ask you to take your child to see a neurologist to rule out any serious issues.
What Can I Expect During a Neurology Appointment?
An initial appointment can take up to an hour. The neurologist will examine your child and ask you questions about your child and your child’s behavior. After the evaluation, the neurologist may request additional testing to rule out or to diagnose certain conditions.
How Do I Find a Child Neurologist?
If your child needs to see a child or pediatric neurologist, usually another doctor will make a referral. In other words, your doctor can recommend a child neurologist to you. Child neurologists may have their own practice or may work in a clinic, at a university medical center, or at a hospital. Your child’s pediatrician may need to schedule the appointment for your child depending on your insurance coverage and other factors. You may also have to wait several months before you can see a specialist.
American Academy of Pediatrics. What is a Child Neurologist? Retrieved on March 31, 2011, from http://www.healthychildren.org/English/family-life/health-management/pediatric-specialists/pages/What-is-a-Child-Neurologist.aspx?nfstatus=401&nftoken=00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000&nfstatusdescription=ERROR%3a+No+local+token
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