Atrophy generally means a decrease in the size of the cell, thus decreasing its ability to carry out its tasks. In this article, learn about the atrophy of nerves and muscles:
Nerve and muscle atrophy: definition
Here is the definition of each of the atrophy of nerves and muscles, each separately:
1. Nerve atrophy
Nerve atrophy means a decrease in the size and ability of the nerve to deliver nerve impulses, which results in a decline in its performance and function in communicating commands to cells.
2. Muscular atrophy
Muscular dystrophy means a gradual decline in muscle mass, and atrophy can be seen with the naked eye, where the muscle or organ appears significantly smaller than the normal size, losing its ability to contract and relax.
Nerve and muscle atrophy: types
Nerve and muscle atrophy occurs for many reasons and on this basis they are divided into several types, and they are the following:
1. Types of Muscular Dystrophy
There are several types of muscular dystrophy:
physical muscular atrophy
The cause of this atrophy is malnutrition and lack of physical activity of the muscle, including the following cases:
- Bedridden people.
- Stroke sufferers who were affected and their limbs weakened.
- astronauts, due to zero gravity.
Usually, muscle size can be restored with step-by-step physical activity, adherence to physicians’ directions, and good nutrition.
pathological muscular dystrophy
It occurs due to old age, famine, or a disease, such as the following:
2. Types of nerve atrophy
Scientists do not know the main reason behind it, but it is likely that aging is the only reason for this, and nerve atrophy is one of the causes of many diseases, including the following diseases:
Neurons gradually decrease in size in people with Alzheimer’s disease, and they lose a very important part of the nerve conduction and networks between neurons, which negatively affects their work, such as memory and analysis.
It is worth noting that the first types of neurons to decline in size are the nerves responsible for memory, but symptoms appear years after the onset of neurological atrophy.
Optic nerve atrophy
In this case, the ocular nerve, which translates signals between the brain and the eye, is gradually damaged, and its symptoms appear as follows:
- Difficulty distinguishing colors.
- Visual decline and sharpness.
- Decreased side vision.
- Blindness in some cases.
Nerve and muscle atrophy: treatment
Here are the treatments for nerve and muscle atrophy
1. Treatment of nerve atrophy
Nerve atrophy cases are treated according to the cause, based on the cause, for example, if the cause is Alzheimer’s, the disease is treated by controlling the symptoms, but if the cause is viral, antivirals are used.
2. Muscular dystrophy treatment
The treatment of muscular dystrophy lies in the following axes:
the physical treatment
Physical therapy aims to increase the blood supply to the area and muscle strength, thus improving the performance of the organ.
electrical stimulation technology
This technique works on giving the patient an electric current of a certain strength to stimulate the activity of the organ.
These waves pass through the body, stimulating muscle contraction to relieve the symptoms of atrophy.
In some cases, doctors resort to surgical operations to improve the function of the organ.
Does nerve and muscle atrophy happen together?
Yes, atrophy of nerves and muscles can occur suddenly and not gradually, and thus is one of the most dangerous and difficult cases, and it may usually occur due to an imbalance in the nerve that delivers the nerve impulse to the same muscle, as is the case in many diseases, including the following:
Polio affects completely or partially the affected muscle, meaning that he may be able to move one of his muscles, but not with the full force of the muscle.
Genes may be the cause, or some diseases or injuries may cause this condition.
2. Guillain-Barré syndrome
It is a disease that usually affects children and is a rare immune disease, in which immune cells attack and destroy nerve cells, and this occurs after surgery, microbial infection, or a severe wound.
Its danger lies in paralysis of the chest muscles, which causes suffocation, but the child usually recovers within a few weeks.
3. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
This disease is due to genetic factors by 5% -10%, while the cause of the rest of the cases is unknown, and it usually affects the nerves responsible for movement such as walking and speaking gradually, causing death in the end for many cases.
In advanced cases, diabetes causes atrophy of the nerves, affecting the muscles of the buttocks, thighs, and legs. People with this condition complain of pain and a feeling of stings. It is worth noting that 50% of people with type 1 and 2 diabetes have different degrees, but it is not as dangerous as the previous diseases.