In the movie The Graduate from the 1960s, Benjamin Braddock (played by Dustin Hoffman) is advised to pursue a promising career in plastics. For those of us who practice neurology today and wonder about innovations in the next millennium, my vote is for therapeutics. Although neurology was once considered a diagnostic specialty without effective treatments, the staggering number of therapeutic options available today has definitely changed that perception. Consider the numerous drugs available for effective management of migraine, epilepsy, Parkinson disease and other movement disorders, myasthenia gravis, and chronic pain syndromes, to mention only a few. The genetic revolution has increased the understanding of the panoply of genetic defects that can produce neurological dysfunction. It also has provided the tools to bioengineer pharmaceuticals that lessen relapses in multiple sclerosis, dissolve a thrombus occluding a cerebral artery, regenerate a damaged peripheral nerve in patients with diabetes, and stimulate stem cell lines in immunosuppressed patients.
Ringel SP. Hey Mrs Robinson, It's Therapeutics!. Arch Neurol. 2000;57(1):56. doi:10.1001/archneur.57.1.56