With proper medical and psychological-pedagogical assistance, the prognosis of cerebrastenic syndrome in children is favorable. Clinical manifestations become less pronounced, disappear by adolescence. To prevent the development of the syndrome and its exacerbations, it is necessary to carefully monitor the child’s well-being: in the early stages, identify fatigue, determine the cause of daytime sleepiness, headaches, and school failure.
It is important to create a favorable, calm atmosphere in the family, to avoid conflicts, quarrels. It is necessary to adhere to the correct mode of the day: to provide the child with a full sleep at night (at least 8 hours), up to 6-8 years of age – daytime sleep, alternate periods of mental and physical labor, daily walk in the fresh air.
Cerebrastenia develops with organic brain damage.
The causes of the syndrome can be:
- Complications of pregnancy. Severe toxicosis, hypoxia, rhesus conflict, intoxication, and intrauterine infections have a negative effect on the fetal CNS. There is a high risk of cerebrascence when exposed to harmful factors in the later stages of gestation.
- Complicated childbirth. Damage occurs with asphyxia, blood loss, injuries of the natal period. Manifested by ischemic, hypoxic disorders, vertebrobasilar insufficiency.
- Neuroinfection. Damage to the central nervous system is observed in meningitis, encephalitis, poliomyelitis, and myelitis. Asthenia develops as a symptom, persists for a long time after recovery.
- Traumatic brain injury. Asthenic disorders are determined in 88% of children in the long-term TBI. The severity depends on the severity and duration of the injury.
- Somatic diseases. Symptoms are observed when cerebral circulation is insufficient. The causes are pathologies of the cardiovascular system, hypovolemia (decrease in blood volume), hypoxemia (decrease in oxygen in the blood) against the background of kidney diseases, shock and other serious conditions.
- Stress factors. An unexpected intense load on the body can be a trigger for the cerebrastenic syndrome. Symptoms occur after prolonged emotional stress or shock, during the period of age-related physiological crisis, in violation of the daily regime, frequent change of time zones.
Cerebrastenic syndrome develops on the background of hypoxic, ischemic, infectious, traumatic brain lesions. The main manifestations – weakness, fatigue, irritability, headaches – occur due to insufficient oxygen supply to the tissues, reduction in the speed of nerve transmission, and the appearance of pathological foci.
Neurological disseminated microsymptomatics is explained by increased intracranial pressure, slight disturbances of liquorodynamics, changes in the electrical activity of the brain in the residual-organic type. Cerebrastenia is characterized by regredient course, reduction of clinical manifestations. Possible periods of decompensation, provoked by somatic diseases, stressful situations, age crises.
Symptoms of cerebrastenic syndrome in children
Cerebrastenia is manifested by physical weakness, fatigue, drowsiness, and autonomic dysfunctions. Babies are restless, often crying, sleep a lot during the day, awake at night. Appetite is reduced, weight gain is slow, the overall developmental delay is determined. In young children reduced interest in toys. They do not like outdoor games, poorly adapted to unfamiliar surroundings. When stuffiness, heat, cold, harsh sounds, the state of health worsens, the child asks for his hands, is capricious. He does not like trips, riding rides, swings.
Preschool children are anxious, have fears (darkness, monsters, heights). Common symptoms are nocturnal enuresis, meteorological dependence, excessive sweating or chilliness. Emotions are labile, unstable – patients easily get upset, cry, get angry, quickly calm down. Rarely participate in games, not inquisitive enough. Stressful situations lead to functional physiological disorders – vomiting, diarrhea, palpitations, dizziness.
Schoolchildren have symptoms of physical discomfort, and signs of cognitive deficit are more pronounced. Inattention, reduced attention span, inability to memorize learning material are noted. At the lessons of the letter, the child skips the letters, changes them in places, does not have time to write under the dictation, asks again. When verbal answers, he hardly builds a monologue, takes a long time to find the right words, recalls the information. The daily dynamics of working capacity is noticeable: lessons are given much easier in the morning, in the evening there comes exhaustion.
Cerebrastenic syndrome in children leads to a lag in physical and mental development. Infants, children 1-3 years later master the motor and everyday skills, speech. Preschoolers, schoolchildren are given a more difficult curriculum, school failure often develops. Complications of the emotional sphere – increased anxiety, depression, fears, phobias. In severe cases, it is necessary to study at home or in special educational institutions for somatically impaired children. In adolescents, an organic personality disorder is formed on the basis of asthenic syndrome.
Diagnosis of Cerebrastenic Syndrome in Children
Diagnostics of cerebrosthenic syndrome includes clinical, physical, instrumental and laboratory methods. The need for a broad examination is due to the nonspecificity of the symptoms – immunological, infectious, hematological and other diseases should be excluded.
The following methods are used:
- Clinical. A detailed survey, anamnesis, follow-up is conducted by a therapist, neurologist, psychiatrist. Each specialist builds a conversation in accordance with the proposed diagnoses, assigns additional objective examinations.
- Physical. The general practitioner performs a general examination, with complaints about the work of the internal organs, evaluates the work of the lungs, heart, and gastrointestinal tract. A neurologist checks the formation, symmetry, the adequacy of the reflexes, the reaction to light and sound, reveals a lag in development.
- Psychodiagnostic. The psychologist uses the methods of studying cognitive functions – attention, memory, thinking. Cerebrastenia is characterized by a decrease in attentive-mnestic processes, rapid exhaustion, manifested by a deterioration in performance from the beginning to the end of the survey.
- Instrumental. EEG, REG, MRI of the brain, USDG of the head and neck are performed. When asthenic syndrome is determined by vascular inferiority, the deviation of the values of bioelectric potential, the imbalance of nerve impulses.
- Laboratory. Assigned to the general and biochemical analysis of blood. Based on the results, infections, anemia, diabetes mellitus and other diseases that can cause weakness, fatigue, dizziness are excluded.
Treatment of Cerebrastenic Syndrome in Children
Treatment of cerebrosis in children – a comprehensive event. Methods of treatment are selected individually, taking into account the age and severity of clinical manifestations.
The general scheme is as follows:
- Reception of medicines. Drugs that improve blood supply and metabolic processes of the brain, relieve nervous tension, and normalize sleep-wakefulness are prescribed. Nootropics, antianginal drugs, vitamins of group B, amino acids (methionine, lecithin, glycine, glutamine) are shown.
- Physiotherapy. Therapeutic massage, balneotherapy improves blood circulation, promote neuromuscular relaxation. UHF, light therapy increases vascular permeability, stimulates blood circulation, metabolic processes.
- Psychocorrection. Children over 4-5 years old are shown classes with a psychologist, psychotherapist. The correction is aimed at the development of cognitive functions, restoration of emotional balance.
Cerebrastenic syndrome in children is a non-specific neurological symptom complex caused by immaturity, delayed development of the central mechanisms of nervous regulation. Manifest asthenia: increased fatigue, exhaustion of mental and physical activity, drowsiness, decreased concentration, irritability, headache. Diagnosis is based on clinical and neurological examination, supplemented by instrumental studies of the brain, psychological testing, laboratory tests. Treatment is complex, includes taking medication, physiotherapy and psychocorrection.
The word “Cerebrastenic” literally means “weakness, impotence of the brain.” The synonymous names of the syndrome are cerebrostia, asthenia, asthenic syndrome, asthenic condition. The prevalence among children is 3%. Since the main characteristic of cerebrastia is a violation of adaptive-adaptive mechanisms, the syndrome is more often diagnosed during stressful periods of a child’s life – when entering a kindergarten or school.
Epidemiological peaks are determined at the age of 3-4 and 6-7 years. Symptomatology is more pronounced in the offseason – in spring, autumn. Gender and geographical factors do not affect the prevalence of pathology