Q&A: Neurology basics

Neurology is the medical specialty focused on the brain, spinal cord and nerves – a complex system that works together to regulate and coordinate everything the body does.

Joshua Gibbons, D.O., a neurologist with Verde Valley Medical Clinic – Neurology, treats patients in Cottonwood, Camp Verde and Sedona. He focuses on general neurology and has special interests in dementia and movement disorders. Below, Dr. Gibbons answers questions about neurology, and how to stay neurologically sound and healthy.

Q. Why would someone see a neurologist? What conditions does a neurologist treat?

A. You may need to see a neurologist if you suffer from difficult-to-manage headaches, tremors or memory loss. People with a history of stroke and seizures, and those with multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease are also generally treated by neurologists.

Q. What can people do to protect and preserve their neurological health?

A. It’s important to take care of both the mind and the body. This includes eating a healthy diet, getting enough physical exercise, limiting alcohol intake and not smoking. Staying mentally active and engaged with crossword or Sudoku puzzles can also help your neurological health. Always take preventative measures to avoid head injuries and falls.

Q. What’s the most unusual condition you’ve ever treated?

A. Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease, or CJD. This is an extremely rare neurodegenerative disease with fewer than 1,000 U.S. cases each year. Patients can develop a range of side effects, including irregular body movements and seizures. There is currently no cure for CJD, but researchers are hard at work trying to learn more about the disease process, which will hopefully someday lead to successful treatments.

Q. What services are offered through Verde Valley Medical Clinic – Neurology?

A. We personalize each patient’s treatment just for him or her. At Verde Valley Medical Clinic – Neurology in Cottonwood and Northern Arizona Healthcare Medical Group – Flagstaff, we evaluate and treat a broad range of neurological conditions related to the brain, spinal cord and nervous system, including but not limited to:

  • Strokes.
  • Traumatic brain injuries.
  • Neuromuscular disorders.
  • Migraine headaches.

To make an appointment in Camp Verde, Cottonwood, Sedona or the Village of Oak Creek, call 928-649-7991. To make an appointment in Flagstaff, call 928-214-2621.