Neuropsychological evaluations are comprehensive assessments of the behavioral manifestations of brain dysfunction. Patients receiving such evaluations have documented or suspected neurological disorders which may impact on behaviors controlled by the brain (e.g., traumatic brain injury, vascular disorders such as stroke, neoplastic diseases such as brain tumors, progressive diseases such as Alzheimer’s seizure disorders, encephalopathies from infectious or immune diseases such as Lymes Disease of Multiple Sclerosis, congenital or developmental neurological disorders in childhood, to name but a few).
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A NEUROPSYCHOLOGICAL EVALUATION?
• To identify the presence and severity of cognitive, behavioral and psychological dysfunction.
• To establish a baseline of neuro/cognitive functioning, and inform subsequent evaluations for the purpose of measuring the success of clinical interventions.
• To devise and implement a comprehensive and effective treatment plan.
• To predict the permanency of cognitive dysfunction, as well as the ability of an individual to resume his/her premorbid life style.
WHAT DOES A NERUOPSYCHOLOGICAL EVALUATION INCLUDE?
History – obtained by interview with patient and records review.
Observation– both during the interview and formal testing.
Testing – a standard battery of neuropsychological instruments which provide standardized scores that provide an comprehensive picture of the patient’s cognitive and behavioral functions.
Areas of assessment – intellectual processes, executive functions, attention and concentration, memory, language, visuo-spatiial functions, primary and higher order sensation and perception, motor functions, and personality functionality functioning.
Testing time – evaluations may range from several hours of testing to ten or more hours depending on the individual and the reason for assessment. Additional time is needed to review records, score tests and analyze results.
Report – a detailed summary of all information. The findings the compilation of results shape specific recommendations that address the patient’s intellectual. behavioral/psychosocial, educational and vocational needs.
Follow-up consultation – The patient, family members and other interested parties are invited to meet with the neuropsychologist and review the test findings and recommendations.