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Rev Neurol. 2002 Jun 1-15;34(11):1035-43.

[Neuroepidemiology in the eastern region of Colombia].

[Article in Spanish]

Author information

  • 1Departamento de Medicina Interna, Ciencias Básicas y Salud Pública, Universidad Industrial de Santander, Facultad de Salud, Bucaramanga, Colombia.



To determine the presence of eight neurological disorders (migraine, cerebrovascular disease, disorders of movement, peripheral neuropathy, mental retardation, epilepsy, dementia and the sequelas of head injuries) in the eastern region of Colombia.


Using the neuro epidemiological protocol of the World Health Organization (WHO), modified by our group, together with a questionnaire to determine the sequelas of head injuries and the abbreviated mental test (Mini mental), we interviewed people in the municipalities of Bucaramanga, Piedecuesta and Aratoca. The persons suspected of having neurological disorders, who were over 12 years old, were evaluated by neurologists and those under 12 years old by a neuropaediatrician.


In the eastern region, 1,454 persons altogether were interviewed. Neurological conditions were suspected in 454 of these (31.2%), and confirmed in 437 (30.1%). The specific results for these neurological disorders and their respective confidence intervals (in brackets) were: migraine 198.8 (178.7 220.4); peripheral neuropathy: 26.8 (19.4 36.9); epilepsy: 22.7 (15.9 32.1); dementia: 17.9 (11.9 26.5); cerebrovascular disease: 17.2 (11.4 25.7); mental retardation and delayed nervous system development: 15.1 (9.7 23.2); extrapyramidal disorders: 8.3 (4.5 14.8); sequelas of head injuries: 6.9 (3.5 13.1).


These results, obtained using a modified version of a WHO protocol, together with dementia and the sequelas of head injuries, will permit the development of health policies and programmes for the control and treatment of neurological disorders prevalent in this region of Colombia

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