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Neurological Disorders and Pregnancy
Edited by:  Alireza Minagar

Pages:  218  Hard Cover
ISBN 13: 978-0-12-384911-3
Elsevier 2011
List Price:  $160.00

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MedicalScienceBooks.com Medical Book Review:

     Healthcare professionals are often in the position of counseling and answering questions regarding the safety of various pharmaceuticals during pregnancy.  Perhaps even more often they are called upon to answer questions about what effect a disease process of the mother might have on the unborn child.  Although the answers to many of these questions are still to be determined, the prevalence and complexities of disorders of the nervous system pose a special challenge to the physician who often lacks good information on which to base their opinions.
     Neurological Disorders and Pregnancy provides a rich source of information drawn from the most relevant available literature.  The chapter authors have expertly crafted brief synopses of the impact of pregnancy on various neurological conditions and vice versa with particular attention to providing guidance for questions most likely to be brought up at clinic.  It is important to note that a preference was rightly given to large-scale multicenter clinical trials when possible.  Thus the reader can be assured that the information although necessarily incomplete due to the lack of research in many areas, is being drawn from authoritative sources.
     There was a degree of inconsistency among the chapters in terms of what information to discuss and how much detail to include while discussing disease mechanisms.  The chapter on epilepsy and pregnancy was particularly well done in this regard with a good mixture of clinical data along with brief explanations of phenomena such as the mechanism of fertility issues in women who suffer from seizures.  Another note regarding the writing of the text is that in a few sections, particularly in the multiple sclerosis chapter, the authors discuss so many small studies with conflicting results in a single paragraph that the overall conclusion of the section was somewhat confusing. 
     However, in the case of the multiple sclerosis chapter a very clear summary which gave the highpoints of the preceding discussion was provided at the end.  Other chapters such as those on epilepsy and headache also provided summary conclusions. These summaries really help with the comprehension of the main points and should have been standardly included in all the chapters.  Unfortunately, a few chapters had less identifiable summaries and one or two had no clear summary included at all.
     Despite a few technical shortcomings, Neurological Disorders and Pregnancy has important information for any physician who takes care of women of childbearing age, particularly neurologists and psychiatrists who manage conditions pre-pregnancy as they will be confronted regularly with issues covered in this book. 

Publisher Description:

Timely diagnosis and management of neurological diseases during pregnancy poses major therapeutic challenges to neurologists and other non-neurologist health care providers. Pregnancy is a unique period in life associated with significant hormonal and other physiologic changes in female patients, which may trigger or alter the course of neurological and psychiatric disorders. In addition, many diagnostic procedures that can be performed in non-pregnant women are prohibited during pregnancy for safety reasons. Therapeutic decisions and management of a pregnant patient with neurological disorders heavily depends on the issue of the reasonable balance between the risks of no treatment versus active treatment for the mother and her fetus.

This book provides a review of the latest findings in this field, giving the neurologist and non-neurologist the information they need to determine the best treatment. Neurological disorders covered include multiple sclerosis, stroke and epilepsy.

Table of Contents:

  1. Multiple sclerosis and pregnancy

    AH Maghzi


  2. Headaches during pregnancy

    Deborah Elliott


  3. Myasthenia gravis during pregnancy


    Dr Fernanda Silva from Brazil


  4. Stroke during pregnancy


    Alejandro Rabinstein


  5. Neurology of preeclampsia and eclampsia


    Roger E. Kelley


  6. Epilepsy and its management during pregnancy


    John C. De Toledo 


  7. Movement disorders and pregnancy


    Natalia Schneider and Alireza Minagar


  8. Psychiatric illnesses during pregnancy


    Nadejda Alekseeva and VAMC Shreveport


  9. Neuromuscular disorders and pregnancy


    K. Rezania


  10. Sleep disorders and pregnancy


Ahmet Ursavas


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