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Paralysis symptoms Assessment Questionnaire

Questions Your Doctor May Ask - and Why!

During a consultation, your doctor will use various techniques to assess the symptom: Paralysis symptoms. These will include a physical examination and possibly diagnostic tests. (Note: A physical exam is always done, diagnostic tests may or may not be performed depending on the suspected condition) Your doctor will ask several questions when assessing your condition. It is important to openly share any pertinent information to help your doctor make an accurate diagnosis.

It is also very important to bring an up-to-date list of all of your all medical conditions, medications including dosages, and names of numbers of any specialist you see.

Create your printable checklist by answering questions that your doctor may ask below:

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  1. How long have you had the paralysis (loss of power of voluntary movement in a muscle)?

    Why: to determine if acute or chronic.

  2. Which muscles does the paralysis affect?

    Why: e.g. hemiplegia is complete loss of power of the limbs of one side and is usually, but not always due to a lesion within the brain such as a stroke or tumor; paraplegia is complete loss of power of both lower limbs and is usually due to a spinal cord lesion; facial paralysis is usually due to a lesion of the seventh cranial nerve.

  3. Is there total paralysis of the muscles or weakness of the muscles?

    Why: The terms hemiplegia and paraplegia strictly indicate total paralysis. Hemiparesis means weakness of the limbs of one side. Paraparesis means weakness of both lower limbs.

  4. Is the paralysis intermittent?

    Why: may suggest migraine, transient ischemic attacks from the basilar artery or carotid artery disease, epilepsy.

  5. Was the onset sudden or gradual?

    Why: Sudden onset of hemiplegia would most commonly suggest a stroke (due to cerebral thrombosis, hemorrhage or embolism); however a contusion (bruising) of the spinal cord may also produce a sudden onset of paralysis. A history of trauma and a sudden onset of hemiplegia (complete loss of power of the limbs of one side) would suggest a subdural or epidural haematoma (blood clot pressing on the outside of the brain). A gradual onset of hemiplegia may suggest a brain tumor or brain abscess. A sudden onset of facial paralysis would suggest Bell's palsy, diabetic neuropathy and stroke as cause. If gradual onset of facial paralysis must consider acoustic neuroma, advancing petrositis, brain tumor or brain abscess.

  6. If facial paralysis, are the forehead muscles spared from paralysis?

    Why: e.g. if still able to furrow the brow and wrinkle the forehead, the cause of the facial paralysis is most likely due to a brain stroke or brain tumor.

  7. History of head trauma?

    Why: would suggest a subdural or epidural haematoma (blood clot pressing on the outside of the brain) or a hemorrhage in the brain itself. Trauma to the head may also cause a fracture of the petrous temporal bone causing a facial nerve palsy.

  8. Recent viral infection?

    Why: e.g. measles, chicken pox, mumps, rubella - may suggest Acute disseminated encephalitis.

  9. Recent immunization?

    Why: e.g. recent immunization with rabies, influenza, pertussis or smallpox vaccine may suggest acute disseminated encephalomyelitis.

  10. Risk factors for stroke?

    Why: e.g. high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, smoking, family history, atrial fibrillation, cardiovascular disease, increasing age. Less well documented risk factors for stroke include oral contraceptive pill, obesity, stress, sedentary lifestyle, migraine and excessive alcohol consumption.

  11. Risk factors for subarachnoid hemorrhage?

    Why: e.g. berry aneurysm in brain, arteriovenous malformations in the brain, bleeding disorders, bacterial endocarditis, bacterial endocarditis, brain tumor, Marfan's syndrome, Ehlers -Danlos syndrome.

  12. Past medical history?

    Why: e.g. if history of high blood pressure must consider a stroke (due to a cerebral hemorrhage, cerebral thrombosis or cerebral aneurysm); angina; intermittent claudication.

  13. Medications?

    Why: e.g. some medications may increase the risk of thrombotic cerebrovascular disease such as the oral contraceptive pill and hormone replacement therapy; some medications can increase the risk of hemorrhagic stroke such as warfarin.

  14. Cigarette smoking?

    Why: Cigarette smoking is a major risk factor for thrombotic stroke.

  15. Family history?

    Why: e.g. stroke, cerebral aneurysm.

  16. Limb pain?

    Why: a painful joint or muscle disease may interfere with assessment of leg power.

  17. Paralysis of the facial muscles?

    Why: If facial paralysis is associated with complete loss of power of the limbs of one side of the body, should suspect a cause within the brain. If paralysis of the facial muscles is absent, more likely to suggest a cause in the spinal cord.

  18. Fever?

    Why: If associated with hemiplegia may suggest cerebral abscess, venous sinus thrombosis or encephalitis. If associated with paraplegia may suggest venous sinus thrombosis, abscess of the spinal cord or myelitis. If associated with facial paralysis must consider mastoiditis or middle ear infection.

  19. Seizures?

    Why: may suggest brain cancer or metastasis, encephalitis, stroke.

  20. Headaches?

    Why: may suggest brain cancer or brain metastasis, subdural or extradural haematoma, stroke.

  21. Ear ache or hearing loss?

    Why: If associated with facial paralysis should consider acoustic neuroma, petrositis, mastoiditis, herpes zoster and cholesteatoma.

  22. Symptoms of transient ischemic attack?

    Why: e.g. sudden onset of neurological deficit that lasts for less than 24 hours (average length of time is 5 minutes) with complete clinical recovery. Consciousness is usually preserved. Symptoms may include sudden blindness in one eye; inability to speak; weakness, paralysis or numbness of one side of the face, arm and leg.

  23. Symptoms of a stroke (Cerebrovascular accident)?

    Why: e.g. sudden onset of neurological deficit lasting longer than 24 hours. Symptoms depend on the specific blood vessel to the brain that is affected by the stroke. Symptoms may include weakness or paralysis on one side of the body, difficulty with speaking, visual field deficits, numbness to one side of the body.

  24. Symptoms of multiple sclerosis?

    Why: e.g. blurry vision, double vision, dizziness, weakness, numbness or tingling in any limbs.

  25. Symptoms of subarachnoid hemorrhage?

    Why: e.g. sudden severe headache at the back of the head. This is usually followed by vomiting and often loss of consciousness. Focal symptoms depend on amount and site of bleeding and may include weakness or paralysis to one side of the body or visual loss.

  26. Symptoms of Acute disseminated encephalitis?

    Why: e.g. follows many common viral infections such as measles, chicken pox, mumps and rubella or rarely after immunization against rabies, influenza or pertussis. Symptoms may include abrupt onset of fever, neck stiffness, headache, lethargy, confusion, drowsiness, seizures, paralysis of one limb or one side of body or all four limbs may be seen, may also have numbness in the limbs.

  27. Symptoms of Guillain-Barre syndrome?

    Why: e.g. symptoms begin 7-10 days after an infective illness. It results in muscle paralysis which typically ascends from the lower to the upper limbs. Sensory loss (numbness) is usually minimal. The disease usually begins 7-10 days after an infective illness.

  28. Symptoms of acute lower limb ischemia?

    Why: e.g. sudden severe leg pain, pallor of skin, paresthesia or numbness of lower leg, paralysis or weakness of leg.

  29. Symptoms of Bell's palsy?

    Why: e.g. marked weakness on one side of the face, mouth sags, drooling from the affected side of mouth, loss of taste on front of tongue, eye may water, pain behind the ear. Due to a seventh cranial nerve palsy.

Conditions listing medical symptoms: Paralysis symptoms:

The following list of conditions have 'Paralysis symptoms' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.

Select from the following alphabetical view of conditions which include a symptom of Paralysis symptoms or choose View All.

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Conditions listing medical complications: Paralysis symptoms:

The following list of medical conditions have 'Paralysis symptoms' or similar listed as a medical complication in our database.


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