Our experienced neuropsychologists examine cognitive abilities (such as memory, speech and language, visuospatial abilities, concentration, motor skills) and integrate the test data with medical, psychological, developmental, medication and other data to help with diagnosis and determine the presence of a disease or impact of an injury on an individual's functioning. This information aids in differential diagnosis and can assist in treatment and life planning, can describe the clinical course of a condition, and assess response to treatment. Neuropsychological testing is sometimes required as a part of pre-surgical evaluations (e.g., epilepsy surgery).
While medical tests (e.g., CT or MRI) show the structure of the brain, neuropsychological testing reveals the patients' cognitive strengths and weaknesses as they may have been affected by disorders such as dementia, concussion, traumatic brain injury or neurological disorders.
Dementia is not one disease and testing can help differentiate the types of cognitive problems associated with different dementias or identify disorders presenting as dementia. The most common dementias are Alzheimer’s and Vascular dementia. Other dementias are dementia associated with Lewy Body or Parkinson's Disease.
When it comes to diagnosing concussions or traumatic brain injury, some professionals rely on computer tests. While computerized screening tools (e.g., ImPACT concussion battery) might indicate the presence of a cognitive problem, computer tests assess functioning without an adequate context, and can be difficult for the elderly or some people to manage. A comprehensive and sensitive set of established neuropsychological tests, when considered in the context of an individual's personal history and administered by a neuropsychologist, overcomes the limitations of computer tests (e.g., see Slate article on the problems with ImPACT testing).
Neuropsychological assessment is a complex process that involves the integration of many variables that are unique to each patient. These include early life events (medical and psychological), the individual's developmental history, medical issues, medications (and their side effects) and the individual's psychological status. Thus, test results need to be considered in the context of a patient's unique background to arrive at a set of diagnostic conclusions and treatment recommendations. Computerized cognitive testing cannot provide this sort of complex integrative and analytical process.
Unlike other group practices, neuropsychological assessment is the primary assessment service we provide and not a practice add-on.
Psychological testing helps determine mental health diagnosis and in formulating treatment recommendations. When there is a medical disorder, testing identifies factors that can affect coping with an illness. Psychological testing is also used prior to surgical implantation of a spinal cord stimulator to manage chronic pain. We also provide vocational and aptitude testing to help people decide on appropriate job direction.
We provide a safe and confidential psychotherapy process providing an outlet for those seeking to explore and understand themselves, their relationships, needs and goals. The aim of therapy is to collaborate in building the inner strength necessary to face daily and chronic stressors through adoption of evolving and authentic perspectives, helpful coping, and symptom reduction. Some common treatment needs include: difficulty managing moods or stress (e.g., depression or anxiety), relational hardships, life transitions, questions of meaning and purpose, and trauma.