Difference Between Neurophysician and Neurosurgery (With Table)

A nervous system is something that can be called the command centre of the body. Maintaining its good health can be one of the greatest feats, for it is the nervous system that helps us perform any and every activity. Neurophysician and neurosurgery are two commonly used terms in the fields of medical practice related to the brain, spine, and nervous system.

Neurophysician vs Neurosurgery

The difference between neurophysician and neurosurgery is that a neurophysician is an expert practitioner who administers diseases related to the nervous system by using medicines and non-surgical mediations. Meanwhile, neurosurgery is something that a neurosurgeon performs on disease-affected patients by using medicines and surgical mediations. A neurophysician is not trained to perform surgeries while a neurosurgeon is.

A neurophysician is a medical professional who treats diseases of the brain, spine and nervous system which do not require surgery. These diseases can be treated by the use of medications or other therapies. Neurophysicians also work with family doctors sometimes to execute and analyze tests for brain and nervous system disorders. 

Neurosurgery is a neurological surgery that is performed by trained and professional neurosurgeons. It is related to the prevention, diagnosis, surgical treatment, and rehabilitation of any adverse condition that affects the brain, spine, or nervous system. Such mediations are also performed for disorders of the central and peripheral nervous system, as well as the cerebrovascular system. 

Comparison Table Between Neurophysician and Neurosurgery

Parameters of ComparisonNeurophysicianNeurosurgery
PracticeA neurophysician uses medicines and non-surgical mediations to treat patients.Neurosurgery involves treating patients by the use of medicines and surgical mediations.
SpecialityNeurophysicians are specialized to treat disorders such as strokes, dementia, and epilepsy.Neurosurgery generally involves the overall treatment of all disorders related to the brain and spine.
Infectious DiseasesNeurophysicians can treat infectious diseases affecting the nerves.Neurosurgery cannot be performed for infections of the nerve.
Type of DisordersNeurophysicians are sought out by patients suffering from chronic disorders that are long-lasting.Neurosurgery is generally performed on patients with acute disorders that are more complex.
TrainingNeurophysicians generally train for five years to get a medical degree.Neurosurgery requires at least six years of training which leads to the MCh degree.  

What is Neurophysician?

A neurophysician is a professional medical practitioner who treats disorders related to the brain, spine, and nervous system. The process of treatment involves diagnosis, treatment and then management of the disorder. The practices of a neurophysician do not involve operations or surgeries but prescription of medicines and different therapies. Some of the diseases that neurophysicians deal with include  ALS, Alzheimer’s disease, concussion, epilepsy, migraine, stroke, Parkinson’s disease, and even multiple sclerosis.

Neurophysicians also deal with the treatment and diagnosis of nervous system-related disorders in children. Such a neurophysician is called a child or paediatric neurophysician. Some of the conditions that children face are limited to those of their age, however, some disorders even overlap with those that adults face. These disorders include migraines, strokes, epilepsy and even Tourette’s syndrome. Neurophysicians are trained to handle these situations using medicines and therapy.

 A neurophysician generally requires undergoing five years of training which includes graduation from a medical school, completion of an internship as well as training in a neurology residency program. When someone visits a neurophysician, they are likely to go through a physical exam as well as a neurological exam. Through this, neurophysicians use their knowledge and training to test muscle strength, reflexes, and coordination.

What is Neurosurgery?

Neurosurgery is a medical practice that deals with disorders affecting the brain, spinal cord, and nervous system. It involves prevention, diagnosis, surgical mediation, and rehabilitation. Moreover, neurosurgery is also performed for disorders that affect the central and peripheral nervous system as well as the cerebrovascular system. Unlike neurophysicians, neurosurgeons are trained to perform operations and surgeries.

A person who performs neurosurgery is known as a neurosurgeon. Different countries have different criteria that allow a person to become a neurosurgeon. Generally, it takes around six to seven years to earn a degree that allows a neurosurgeon to practice treatment and surgery. Interestingly, neurosurgery has been a practice since ancient times. It was performed mainly for pain relief in the head by the method of a premeditated incision.

Since the last hundred years, there have been many advancements in this field. New technologies and innovations have come about that make the work of a neurosurgeon much easier. One of the most notable aspects regarding this is the invention of different highly crafted tools. Some of these include chisels, dissectors, curettes, distractors, elevators, forceps, hooks, impactors, probes, suction tubes, power tools and even robots.  Although some of these tools have been around for thousands of years, these days they are crafted differently with more precision for being used in surgeries.

Main Differences Between Neurophysician and Neurosurgery

  1. A neurophysician uses medicines and non-surgical mediations to treat patients whereas neurosurgery involves treating the patients using medicines and surgical mediations.
  2. Neurophysicians are specialized to treat disorders such as strokes, dementia, and epilepsy whereas neurosurgery generally involves the overall treatment of all disorders related to the brain and spine.
  3. Neurophysicians can treat infectious diseases affecting the nerves whereas neurosurgery cannot be performed for this purpose.
  4. Neurophysicians generally train for five years to get a medical degree whereas neurosurgery requires training of approximately six to seven years.
  5. Neurophysicians deal with chronic disorders that affect patients whereas neurosurgery is performed on patients who suffer from acute disorders.

Conclusion

Neurophysician and neurosurgery are two commonly used terms in the vast world of neurology. Both have several overlapping characteristics; however, they have some key differences between them as well. One of the major distinguishing factors is that a neurophysician is not trained to perform surgery while neurosurgery requires surgery to be performed on the patient.

For this, neurophysicians and neurosurgeons also must go through different trainings that last for a different period of time. Moreover, a neurophysician does not earn as much remuneration as a neurosurgeon does. This may be because neurosurgeons must perform operations that are a much more difficult task.

References

  1. https://academic.oup.com/neurosurgery/article-abstract/49/5/1231/2751994
  2. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00701-020-04233-9
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