Neuropsychological Evaluation | Falls Neuropsychology and Psychotherapy Associates, PLLC

Neuropsychological Evaluation

Clinical neuropsychology is a specialty area within clinical psychology. Neuropsychologists study how problems with brain functioning affect people's cognitive abilities, emotions, and behavior. Brain injuries and diseases can disrupt concentration, learning and memory, speed of thinking and responding, language, spatial abilites, and problem solving. They can also cause significant emotional changes and changes in how patients interact with other people. 

A neuropsychological evaluation is a structured, evidence-based method of investigating these effects of injury and illness. In addition to specialized clinical tests, neuropsychologists use their understanding of normal brain functions, the effects of different brain diseases and injuries, psychiatric disorders, and rehabilitation principles to provide patients with the most accurate diagnoses and treatment recommendations possible. 

The Evaluation Process

Evaluations are generally conducted over two sessions. The first session is an interview with the new patient, often with his or her family. The purpose of this session is to gain as much information as possible about current symptoms, medical and mental health history, education, work, etc., so as to provide a context within which the patient can be better understood. In some cases, various rating forms are completed during the initial session, which typically lasts from one to two hours. 

We request that patients bring all relevant medical records to their initial session or provide them in advance for review. Examples of relevant records would include physicians' notes, MRI/CT scan reports, EEG reports, and any prior psychological or neuropsychological test reports.

The second session is for the formal neuropsychological testing, and can last from three to six hours depending upon the nature of the referral. Most of the testing involves question-and-answer or tabletop work, although a few tests may require limited computer use. Neuropsychological testing is non-invasive and does not involve any physical discomfort. Patients are only required to give a full effort on every test so that a valid score profile may be obtained. Many patients report that they enjoy these challenging mental activities.

The Neuropsychological Report

After the testing is completed and all tests are scored, each patient's unique profile of standardized scores is developed. From these scores, a written report is generated. The report describes and interprets the test findings in detail and includes specific diagnostic impressions and recommendations for treatment. Most patients return after about two weeks for a follow up session, where all of this is discussed in detail. 


© falls neuropsychology and psychotherapy associates, pllc  2016