The Brain, Mind, and Behavior course provides varied learning opportunities to assist the medical student in developing a strong structural, functional, and clinically oriented knowledge base in the neurosciences, and to develop an understanding of the pathologic characteristics, signs, symptoms, and treatment modalities for common neurologic and psychiatric disorders.
Overall course objectives:
- Describe the molecular and cellular features of neurons and their supporting cells; discuss the responses of these cells to injury, including mechanisms for plastic changes and regeneration.
- Outline the chemical, physical, and molecular properties of neurons related to impulse conduction and synaptic transmission, as well as the clinical manifestations of membrane potential and synaptic failure.
- Discuss the biochemical, synaptic, pathway, and functional features of the major neurochemical systems and describe their role in the pathophysiology of various neurological and psychiatric disorders.
- Diagram the major structures involved in the vascular, cerebrospinal fluid and blood-brain barrier systems; discuss their role in contributing to and responding to CNS pathology;describe their use in clinical diagnosis and treatment.
- Know the major events in central and peripheral nervous system development as well as features and causes of some preventable CNS developmental disorders.
- Describe the main neuroanatomic and functional features of the spinal cord and brainstem as well as their reflexes, blood supply, and common disorders.
- Discuss the anatomy and function of individual cranial nerves and spinal nerves, their peripheral distributions, roles in reflex testing, and clinical signs of dysfunction.
- Compare and contrast the anatomic and physiologic features of the general sensory systems with those of the special senses of vision, hearing, balance, smell and taste; describe clinical signs of sensory system lesions at different CNS levels; localize lesions involving these systems based on history and/or clinical signs and symptoms.
- Diagram the anatomic and functional features of motor systems that control movements of the trunk, limbs, head, and eyeballs; describe the nature and time course of clinical deficits following different types of motor system insults; localize motor system pathology based on clinical signs and/or clinical images.
- Describe selected pathologies of the eyeball and their treatment modalities.
- Outline and diagram the neural pathways involved in visceral, endocrine, and behavior responses to external and internal change; compare neural, endocrine, and behavior changes associated with regional hypothalamic, pituitary, and autonomic nervous system dysfunction.
- Describe the consciousness system and its role in attention, arousal, and sleep; describe the locations where lesions can affect the level of consciousness; discuss the physiologic basis and clinical importance of the EEG; describe the neurological examination for brain death.
- Describe the neural mechanisms of sleep and how selected sleep disorders disrupt the sleep cycle.
- Describe the symptoms of, and basic treatment strategies for disorders that alter consciousness (sleep disorders, coma, seizures) including the pharmacology of general anesthetics and sedative/hypnotic agents.
- Describe the regional anatomical and functional features of the cerebral cortex (especially those associated with cognition, speech, learning and memory); understand the known molecular mechanisms behind learning, memory, and other forms of synaptic plasticity; understand clinical terms and clinical signs associated with regional cortical dysfunction.
- Diagram neural systems involved in emotional feelings, emotional expression (behavior), and motivation;discuss the effects of stress and neurotransmitter imbalance on structural and functional features of the nervous system, particularly those involved with cognition and emotional behavior.
- Apply problem-solving skills to acquired neuroscience knowledge in order to predict the location and probable pathophysiology of a patient described in a case study where pertinent findings from the history, clinical signs and symptoms, and possible lab tests and/or clinical images are provided.
- Use information technology as a resource to access high-quality and current material related to a clinical problem or topic.
- Describe the syndromes that comprise the major groups of psychiatric disorders (anxiety disorders, somatoform and dissociative disorders, personality disorders, eating disorders, impulse control disorders, selected child mental disorders) and the validating criteria for psychiatric diagnoses.
- List the important features of a clinical assessment of behavior and be able to recognize symptoms of common psychiatric disorders.
- Integrate neuropharmacology, neuroimaging, and neuropathology into their understanding of the biological bases of psychiatric disorders.
- Describe the basic techniques and indications for the major types of psychotherapy.
- Identify and understand the pathological features, neurological systems, and treatment for nervous system insults resulting from hypoxia, ischemia, and axonal transection.
- Identify and understand the pathological features, neurological systems, and treatment for common neurodegenerative diseases, central inflammatory disease, tumors, and central and peripheral motor diseases.
- Describe the pharmacology (drugs to treat Parkinson's disease, drugs to treat mania and depression, drugs to treat anxiety disorders, drugs to treat psychotic disorders) and efficacy of agents used in the treatment of nervous system disorders as well as possible adjunctive therapy and drug-drug interactions.
- Describe the pharmacology and clinical application of drugs used in pediatric and adult sedation and pain-control as well as strategies for approaching chronic and cancer pain.
- Define and discuss the neurobiology of drug dependence, addiction, tolerance, and withdrawal, and the pharmacology, clinical aspects and treatment of commonly abused substances (nicotine, alcohol, street drugs).
- Solve case-based problems in which the scope of analysis illustrates and reinforces basic neuroscience principles, neuroanatomic relationships, principles of systems organization, and functional correlates.
- Demonstrate skills in clinical thinking, which should include a knowledge of symptoms and signs of neurologic disorders, and the ability to know where and what the lesion is in the CNS when given clinical cases.
- Complete the neuroimaging self-study component and be able to describe the basic techniques used for imaging the central nervous system and its vasculature and demonstrate skill in the analysis of neuroimages; analyze features of and identify structures and pathologies in different types of clinical images.
- Describe the basic principles underlying some of the most frequently used diagnostic tests for neurological disorders.
- Identify and describe the function of the major anatomical structures of the head and neck and make reasonable predictions of the clinical manifestation of injury or disease of these anatomic structures.
- Recognize important clinical structures and landmarks of the head and neck on plain film, magnetic resonance, and computer tomographic images.
COURSE OUTCOMES FOR THE DISSECTION OF THE HEAD AND NECK LABORATORIES
- Demonstrate fluency in the language of anatomy associated with head and neck.
- Explain anatomic features pertinent to mechanisms of disease development associated with the head and neck.
- Conduct a physical exam using surface anatomy of the head and neck.
- Translate symptoms into a differential diagnosis based upon knowledge of anatomy of the head and neck.
- Analyze anatomical relationships (e.g. structural and spatial) through medical imaging of the head and neck to facilitate making a medical diagnosis.
- Visualize normal anatomic relationships (including normal variation) when conducting the physical exam of the head and neck.
- Identify the blood supply, innervation, anatomical structures, osteology, spaces and accessory organs associated with the head and neck.
- Describe the function of vessels, nerves, spaces, anatomical structure and accessory organs associated with the head and neck.
- Describe the developmental basis for normal and abnormal structure of the head and neck.