The burden of non-communicable neurological disorders is increasing in India mainly due to ageing of the population. Among the known risk factors for neurological disorders burden are high blood pressure, air pollution, dietary risks, high fasting plasma glucose, and high body-mass index are the leading contributors.

The leading neurological disorders in India are:
  • Stroke

  • Headache disorders

  • Epilepsy

  • Cerebral palsy

  • Alzheimer’s disease

  • Parkinson’s disease

  • Multiple sclerosis

Neurological disorders represent a significant burden on public health in India, impacting the lives of millions of individuals and their families.

Among the leading neurological disorders in the country are:

1. Stroke: Stroke occurs when there is a sudden interruption of blood flow to the brain, leading to brain cell damage. Ischemic stroke, caused by a blocked blood vessel, and hemorrhagic stroke, caused by a burst blood vessel, are the two main types. Stroke can result in various neurological deficits, such as paralysis, difficulty speaking, and cognitive impairment.

2. Headache Disorders: Headache disorders, including migraines and tension-type headaches, are prevalent neurological conditions in India. Migraines, in particular, are characterized by severe headaches, often accompanied by other symptoms such as nausea, sensitivity to light, and visual disturbances.

3. Epilepsy: Epilepsy is a neurological disorder characterized by recurrent seizures, which are caused by abnormal electrical activity in the brain. These seizures can vary in type and severity, affecting a person’s consciousness, movements, or sensations.

4. Cerebral Palsy: Cerebral palsy is a group of permanent movement disorders that appear in early childhood. It is caused by damage to the developing brain, affecting muscle coordination, posture, and balance.

5. Alzheimer’s Disease: Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder and the most common cause of dementia. It primarily affects memory and cognitive functions, leading to a decline in thinking, behavior, and the ability to perform daily activities.

6. Parkinson’s Disease: Parkinson’s disease is a chronic and progressive movement disorder. It is characterized by motor symptoms such as tremors, rigidity, bradykinesia (slowness of movement), and postural instability. Non-motor symptoms like depression, sleep disturbances, and cognitive changes can also occur.

7. Multiple Sclerosis (MS): MS is an autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system attacks the protective covering of nerve fibers (myelin) in the central nervous system. This disrupts the communication between the brain and the rest of the body, leading to a wide range of neurological symptoms

Addressing the challenges posed by these neurological disorders requires a multidisciplinary approach involving neurologists, neurosurgeons, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and other healthcare professionals. Early diagnosis, access to appropriate treatment, and public awareness campaigns are essential to improve outcomes and the quality of life for individuals living with these conditions.

It is important to note that the prevalence and impact of neurological disorders may change over time, depending on various factors, including advancements in healthcare, changes in lifestyle, and aging demographics. Regular epidemiological studies and data collection are necessary to stay up-to-date with the current status of neurological disorders in India.