What is a neuropsychological evaluation?
A neuropsychological assessment is conducted by a clinical neuropsychologist. Neuropsychologists are licensed psychologists with expertise in brain-behavior relationships and have additional training and education in neuroanatomy, cognitive processing, and central nervous system disorders. They apply their knowledge of brain structures and systems to discover if there are any underlying cognitive issues that may be impacting areas of functioning.
Neuropsychological evaluations assess the brain functions and associated areas:
- Intellectual Functioning
- Attention, Concentration, Processing Speed
- Executive Functioning (e.g., planning, organization, impulse control, problem-solving)
- Learning and Memory
- Visuospatial processing
- Sensorimotor functions
- Academic skills (i.e., reading, writing, mathematics)
- Social-Emotional Functioning
Neuropsychological testing helps individuals, families, and referring providers have a better understanding of the patient’s strengths and weaknesses and is often used to help arrive at a diagnosis. Assessment helps provide a “road map” that identifies crucial recommendations, such as which types of treatment are needed to help with presenting issues, necessary accommodations or modifications (e.g., extended time), and educational/vocational interventions or support.Neuropsychological testing is also helpful when a diagnosis is already known or a medical event (e.g., a head injury) has occurred, in order to characterize any associated cognitive changes and to provide recommendations.
What types of conditions do you evaluate or diagnose?
We work with individuals across the lifespan with a range of presenting concerns.
Children and Adolescents
- Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
- Learning disabilities: dyslexia and related reading problems, dysgraphia and related writing problems, mathematics disorder
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Intellectual Disability
- Medical/neurological conditions affecting cognitive/academic functioning (e.g., traumatic brain injury, stroke, cancer, epilepsy or seizure disorders)
Adults and Older Adults
- Dementia and age-related memory concerns
- Traumatic brain injury and concussion
- Movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease
- Multiple Sclerosis
The amount of testing needed varies depending on the individual and the reasons for having an evaluation.For Children and Adolescents
- A parent consultation to discuss what the concerns are and to obtain relevant developmental, medical, and social history and to determine the goals of testing
- 1 to 3 neuropsychological testing sessions with interactive, paper and pencil tests
- A parent feedback session where results, impressions, and recommendations are discussed, and a written report is provided
- Depending on the age of the child, a patient feedback session may also be scheduled
An adult evaluation typically begins with an interview to obtain relevant history and determine the goals of the evaluation. Many patients prefer to bring a family member to provide additional perspective. Neuropsychological testing generally occurs on the same day as the interview and can usually be completed in one day. A feedback session where results, impressions, and recommendations are discussed, is provided on a different date. A written report is provided at the feedback session.