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Neurologists are Medical Doctors who specialize in diseases and disorders found within the nervous system—epilepsy, insomnia, multiple sclerosis, brain and spinal cord tumors, to name a few. A Vascular Neurologist is even more specialized. Vascular Neurologists zero in on diseased blood vessels that provide circulation to the nervous system, which can lead to strokes.
Medical research centers, private practices, clinical laboratories—as a Vascular Neurologist, you have the option of working in many settings. Like any Neurologist, you need to perform examinations of head and neck nerves, reflexes, and cognitive abilities. You also perform tests, like CAT scans and MRIs. Whenever invasive techniques are necessary (for example, cutting into the patient), you provide a referral to a Neurosurgeon.
You’re commonly known as a “Stroke Doctor” because most of your patients will need your help during the post-stroke rehabilitation process and throughout every stage of treatment, which includes therapy and medication. Though it’s likely that your main focus will be stroke survivors, you may also handle patients suffering from other nervous system disorders.
Your expertise with strokes makes you an asset to research teams developing new treatments. In fact, this specialization in the field of neurology is the product of recent stroke diagnosis and treatment discoveries. Many academic medical centers have added vascular neurology programs, shifting the responsibility of stroke patients away from General Neurologists and Emergency Room Physicians.