Dr Jagjit S Chopra, Emeritus Professor, department of neurology, PGIMER, National Academy of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, released the second edition of his book, Neurology in Tropics, in Chandigarh on Saturday.
The book is a practical guide for management of tropical neurological disorders, which according to his research, has emerged out of what he refers to as, “better lifestyle”.
What inspired Chopra to write the book was a preface written by Dr D John Spillane of Britain in 1972, in the first edition of the book which stated, “readers of the present volume may feel that a further century awaits in the tropics and it will take many years before a comprehensive account of tropical neurology can be undertaken.”
Chopra and his colleague Dr Indermohan S Sawhney took the responsibility to update this book in view of rapidly advancing medical technology, emergence of newer lifestyle diseases affecting the nervous system and changing pattern of therapy for these diseases.
The 1,000-page book has 80 chapters and contributions from 146 authors in 23 countries. The book touches upon research vitals on nutritional disorders in children that directly affect their neurological system, strokes and epileptic seizures, blindness, paralysis and coronary heart diseases
owing to sedentary lifestyle. Specific chapters also discuss alzheimer diseases in the elderly.
“While the world is constantly changing, it is hard to believe that not much research is done on modern diseases, which are on a rise owing to the so-called better lifestyle adopted by the masses, which has affected their habits and way of living,” said Chopra.
He added that according to the data and research, 40 per cent of the adult population of Punjab is hypersensitive, 53 per cent people obese and 80 per cent people obese at the abdominal level, the irony being that many are living with it, without knowing the risk factors.
“The book has chapters, which deal with the effects of climate change on nervous system, effects of air pollution on brain, causes of hypertension and others.
The book can be of great value to neurologists in developing countries to understand diagnosis and treatment of neurological diseases encountered in the tropics, ultimately helping masses in preventive and treatment measures.”
The book elaborates on neurological problems that emerge from modern lifestyles, which cause stress and add to reduction in exercise and inculcate wrong eating habits. Reduced emotional attachments in the family, reflected Chopra, add to the trauma leading to sleep disorders and considerable use of junk food, which add to obesity, the major cause of any nervous breakdown.
Bronchial diseases are also a result of modern lifestyle and excessive pollution, which add fungi, metals and toxic substances to micro-particles in the air, adding to neurological problems.
“Twenty-five per cent of patients in India, who die of stroke, are below the age of 40 and there are 55 million diabetic people in India. Modern lifestyle is the cause for this. A regular blood pressure and blood sugar check-up, healthy diet and regular exercise can keep many diseases at bay,’’ said Chopra.