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There are Many Benefits to Neuropsychological Evaluations

Deborah O. Day, Psy.D - Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Orlando Neuropsychological Evaluations are important because they can determine whether thinking skills, mood, or personality have been changed or affected by a neurological abnormality. The evaluation includes the establishment of a baseline by which changes in skills and personality can be compared over time, for purposes of monitoring the condition and deciding on appropriate treatments or courses of action. Neuropsychological evaluations also help the patient and their family make important decisions pertaining to personal responsibilities, work, and their lifestyle. Family members can be educated on how the disorder or abnormality affects the patient’s functioning, allowing them to understand and aid the patient more effectively. These evaluations also allow the patient’s supervising doctor access to information that can help them decide on medication or treatment methods. This may prevent unwanted side effects, and improved cognition. Neuropsychological evaluations are required for any person who is contemplating deep brain stimulation as a method of treatment, in order to identify whether such a treatment would be appropriate. These valuations can also allow doctors to make more specific diagnoses, especially when the neural dysfunction does not outwardly seem to have one specific, categorical cause. The brain does not tend to have clear-cut, distinct boundaries for functioning and cognition; if an injury or abnormality occurs within the brain, a plethora of disorders can result. With neuropsychological evaluations, neuropsychologists are given a much clearer picture of how the damaged areas are affecting the patient. 

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Neuropsychological Evaluations

Deborah O. Day, Psy.D - Monday, August 18, 2014

Neuropsychology is a field of study that looks at the relationship between your brain and your behavior. Specialists in neuropsychology assess and treat patients with brain injuries or diseases, and have a deeper understanding of neuroanatomy. A neuropsychological evaluation is an official evaluation of a person’s mood, personality and cognitive ability. These evaluations are officiated by an Orlando neuropsychologist, and will test aspects of cognition such as memory, concentration, and problem solving. Neuropsychological evaluations typically involve a preliminary interview with the patients, and then a few standardized tests. The administered tests can be based on self-reported responses, or completed by a psychometrist. The test scores, when determined, are compared to the scores of a healthy person from the same demographic. Age, education, gender, and ethnicity are all important factors that need to be identified. Through this method, the neuropsychologist can analyze a patient’s results and become aware of the patient’s specific strengths and weaknesses. Specialists look at a comprehensive set of data in order to identify patterns and understand brain function. Complete evaluations usually take between two and five hours, although some can occur for up to eight hours if the issues are very complex, or if the patient is overly fatigued and not compliant. If this is the case, the neuropsychologist may delay the tests in order to allow the patient to have their optimal performance level evaluated. When someone suffers from a brain injury or a disorder involving psychiatric or movement abnormalities, they may experience changes in mood, thinking skill, or personality that can be either dramatic or subtle. Although these changes may be indicative of the underlying neural injury or abnormality, they can also be indicative of side effects from different treatments. 

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