What is a neuropsychological assessment?
A neuropsychological assessment is a comprehensive evaluation of cognitive and behavioral abilities using a set of standardized tests and procedures. Unlike CT or MRI scans, which show the structure of the brain, neuropsychological testing examines how well the brain is working when it performs certain tasks (e.g. learning new information, engaging in memory tasks, problem solving, etc.). The resulting pattern of cognitive strengths and weaknesses is used to assist in clarifying diagnosis and treatment planning to help you function optimally.
Why have I been referred for a neuropsychological evaluation?
Neuropsychological evaluations are requested in order to assist your physician or psychologist in understanding how the various systems of your brain are functioning. Testing is recommended when there are symptoms or complaints involving your thinking skills, such as changes in concentration, memory, organization, reasoning ability, language, perception and coordination, as well as changes in behavior, mood, and personality.
Neuropsychological testing can help define what is interfering with your functioning at work or at home and tailor treatment recommendations to assist you in your daily functioning and enhance your quality of life.
Common clinical referrals include:
- Traumatic brain injury / Concussion
- Attentional disorders
- Age-related memory decline
- Major or Minor Neurocognitive disorders (dementias)
- Seizure disorder / Epilepsy
- Multiple sclerosis
- Cognitive difficulties associated with chemotherapy
- Cognitive difficulties associated with movement disorders (Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, etc.)
- Cognitive difficulties associated with psychiatric illness