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BSC2346 Human Anatomy and Physiology I
Module 06 Case Study
Question 1
Donna, a 42-year-old mother of two, has been experiencing intermittent tingling and numbness in both of her feet. She has also had trouble holding a pen while writing. In the past few months, the tingling and numbness in her extremities seemed to subside on its own, so she was not very concerned. Recently, though, the symptoms have spread to her knees and thighs and are persisting.
Yesterday, she stumbled when getting out of bed in the morning. When she tried to stand, her right leg was too weak to hold her weight and she fell again. She noticed that she scraped her right knee during the fall, but does not feel any pain from the wound. Donna notices that she has blurry vision and thinks that might be the reason she fell.
All of the following indicate sensory deficits EXCEPT:
Blurry vision
Tingling in her feet
Muscular weakness
Numbness in her legs
Question 2
Donna does not feel the wound on her knee. In a normal situation, describe how this sensory input of a scraped knee would result in the feeling of pain.
Question 3
Donna has weakness in her right leg, but her left leg is functioning normally. Which components of the nervous system are involved with skeletal muscle movement? Be specific about how the motor impulse moves through the body.
Question 4
Which of the following ly defines a motor unit?
All motor units are afferent neurons
A single neuron and all the muscle cells it innervates
A single muscle and all the neurons that innervate it
A single muscle and its largest associated nerve
Question 5
Which of the following statements is true?
Donna’s symptoms are most likely only related to the brain, and not peripheral nerves.
Donna is experiencing problems related to sensory neurons only.
Donna is experiencing both motor and sensory deficits.
Donna is experiencing problems related to motor neurons only.
Question 6
List and describe any and all symptoms in Donna’s history that could be related to a pathology of her motor neurons.
Question 7
Donna’s primary care physician wants to screen her for Multiple Sclerosis. Which of the following tests would provide the most definitive diagnosis for MS?
Muscle strength test
Complete blood count
Bone scan
Question 8
If Donna does have MS, the disease is affecting her myelin sheath. Briefly describe what happens to the myelin sheath and how it disrupts nerve function in patients with Multiple Sclerosis.
Question 9
Donna later sees a specialist who wants to perform a spinal tap, which is an analysis of cerebrospinal fluid. Where is cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) found?
Peripheral nerves
Surrounding the structures of the Central Nervous System
Surrounding every synapse and neuromuscular junction in the body
Inside each neuron’s soma
Question 10
After extensive testing, Donna’s care team concluded that she does have Multiple Sclerosis and have prescribed steroid treatment. How will steroids help alleviate her symptoms?
Question 11
Andre is a 68-year-old grandfather who has been struggling with his memory lately. At first, he was simply forgetting an appointment from time to time or forgetting to take his morning vitamins. However, now his spouse and children have noticed that his forgetfulness is progressing. There have been moments where he forgot how to get home, couldn’t remember his own phone number, or the names of his grandchildren. His family is worried he may have Alzheimer’s disease and they are not sure what to do.
Andre’s family decides to do some research about dementia and
Alzheimer’s disease. Which of the following statements is true?
Dementia is a normal form of aging, but Alzheimer’s disease is not.
Alzheimer’s disease involves neuron damage and dementia does not.
Alzheimer’s disease is a form of dementia.
Alzheimer’s disease is not related to dementia.
Question 12
Which of the following is NOT a typical symptom of Alzheimer’s disease?
Mood and behavior change
Difficulty recalling recently learned information
Disorientation to time and place
Forgetting appointments, but remembering them later
Question 13
Which of the following scenarios is considered a normal age-related change in memory?
Paying less attention to grooming and/or cleanliness
Avoiding social activities, hobbies, or sports
Having trouble remembering the rules of a favorite game
Misplacing items occasionally and needing to retrace steps to find them
Question 14
What are the indications in Andre’s history that would support a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease?
Question 15
What other Alzheimer’s disease risk factors might exist that are not given in Andre’s history? List and describe at least 5 risk factors.
Question 16
As Alzheimer’s disease progresses, the brain produces less and less of which neurotransmitter?
Question 17
Alzheimer’s disease is diagnosed using all of the following tools EXCEPT:
Brain scans
Peripheral nerve biopsy
Tests to measure memory, problem solving, attention, and language
Blood tests, urine tests, and spinal fluid analysis
Question 18
Describe how the plaques found in Alzheimer’s disease disrupt nerve impulses.
Question 19
There is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, but cholinesterase inhibitors can be used to treat symptoms like memory loss or language issues. Briefly discuss how this type of medication affects the physiology of neurons and nerve impulses.
Question 20
Andre’s primary care physician will likely refer him to a specialist. Which type of specialist treats Alzheimer’s disease? With the information you are given about Andre, how do you think his specialist will proceed? List and describe at least 3 treatments, tests, or other options that would make sense for Andre’s stage of memory loss.

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