Author Affiliation: Department of Neurology, Klinikum rechts der Isar der Technischen Universität München, Germany.
Beside computed tomographic and magnetic resonance imaging, laboratory analyses are a mainstay in the diagnostic workup of most neurologic diseases. Although this holds true for many specialties in medicine, laboratory analyses in neurology substantially rely on a very close interaction between clinical chemists and neurologists because the interpretation of the results is largely based on the clinical context. Moreover, laboratory tests are often performed by neurologists themselves, and the identification of new biomarkers specific for neurologic diseases is mainly driven by clinicians. Last but not least, laboratory medicine in neurology includes a unique analyte, which is cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Cerebrospinal fluid diagnostics have a long-standing tradition, especially in Europe, where guidelines on the routine use of CSF analysis have recently been published.
Berthele A. Laboratory Diagnosis in Neurology. Arch Neurol. 2012;69(1):140-141. doi:10.1001/archneur.69.1.140-b