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Clinical neuropsychology is a sub-specialty of clinical psychology that specializes in the assessment and treatment of patients with brain injury or disease.
A clinical neuropsychologist holds a doctorate in clinical psychology (i.e. Ph.D. or Psy.D.), and has completed a clinical internship and specialized post-doctoral training in clinical neuropsychology. Some neuropsychologists have a doctorate in clinical neuropsychology. What distinguishes a clinical neuropsychologist from other clinical psychologists is knowledge of the brain, including an understanding of areas such as neuroanatomy and neurological disease. The discipline involves the application of standardized psychometric measures in the study of brain behavior relationships. They use neuropsychological tests (clinically referred to as "batteries") to assess cognitive deficits, and they are involved in the management, treatment, and rehabilitation of cognitively impaired patients (American Neuropsychiatric Association). Only board certification guarantees competency in clinical neuropsychology.
A neuropsychological evaluation allows us to assess an individual's cognitive functioning, aid in diagnosis, and ultimately guide us in the treatment for that individual. At Carolina Neuroservices, we offer several extensive neuropsychological test batteries. Neuropsychological testing is most times an all day process in which the patient will be given a variety of tasks to complete in order to be able to identify neurocognitive impairment through evaluation of attention, memory, visual perceptual abilities, executive functioning, language, intelligence (IQ), motor skills, tactile functioning, and personality.
The tests assess your ability to think and remember. You can expect to fill out questionnaires, construct puzzles, or perform tasks, like math problems or drawing.
A complete evaluation generally takes between five to eight hours, and sometimes, the evaluation might need to be completed over multiple sessions. This all depends on the complexity of the issues that are to be addressed with neuropsychological evaluation and the patient's condition. For example, mental fatigue or processing speed of the individual being tested. Every person is different and unique, therefore the testing duration time will also vary. Our psychometrists are constantly monitoring and prioritizing our patients so that their test results reflect the patient's best possible and most accurate performance.
Pediatric and adolescent evaluations are available for ages 6-17 years, and adult evaluations are available for those 18-80+ years of age. If you are interested in receiving neuropsychological testing, please contact our office to inquire and set up your initial consultation.
A psychometrist administers and scores neuropsychological, psychological, personality, and academic tests. They also are in charge of the management, care, storage, and inventory of test materials, as well as patient data. They do not diagnose and they do not interpret results. They may only perform duties under the supervision of licensed psychologists. Psychometrists work closely for extended periods of time with patients for the purpose of neuropsychological testing.
On the day of your testing, you will meet one of our two psychometrists who will administer the testing battery. All testing services begin promptly at 8am and generally end around 5pm (depending on the individual), so be sure to get a good night's sleep before. Typically, there are short breaks for the patient if needed, as well as an hour lunch break from 12pm to 1pm. Upon the end of the testing session, you may schedule your testing follow-up appointment with Dr. Ewert, who will go over the results with you one-on-one and suggest treatment options to address any deficit areas at that time.
Family and friends play a role in a patient's neuropsychological testing. Although they are not allowed to be with the individual when they're being tested, we encourage all the support for our patients. Depending on the test battery, family or friends who act as "informants" to the patient will need to fill out some additional paperwork that will all be complied in the final neuropsychological report. These forms need to be submitted to the office before your testing follow-up appointment.
A good night's sleep, a good breakfast the day of, and your utmost cooperation is most important. Be sure to bring water and/or snacks (especially if your child is getting tested) to help avoid fatigue throughout your testing session, as the process is time-intensive and minimal breaks are given upon request. Wear comfortable clothing, and consider bringing a jacket as the temperature of the office may fluctuate. If you wear glasses for reading or you utilize a hearing aid, don't forget to bring them with you!
Please let us know if you regularly take stimulants or any other medications. It is most helpful to conduct the testing when you are not taking any medications deigned to treat ADHD. Before your visit, we will encourage you to talk to your primary physician about stopping your medication for the evaluation.
You might be a little tired after you finish testing. Rest up, and wait for your testing follow up appointment. We suggest that our patients write down any questions or concerns they may have in one place, and then bring them with you to your appointment. That way, our patients are sure to leave our office with peace of mind in regards to their results.
Our office can speak to you about a translator. Contact us for further information.
Any forms given to you by our office staff and/or psychometrists are important because they're necessary components to your final report. These all play a part in your evaluation and they need to be submitted well before your testing follow up appointment. A $25 replacement fee will need to be charged with certain forms, and our staff will let you know in advance if that's the case.
We provide forensic evaluations for personal injury, workers compensation, and legal capacity. Dr. Ewert also serves as an expert witness for both brain injury, as well as legal capacity cases.
Our team needs time to compile your report, which is why we schedule testing follow-ups three weeks out from the day you finished testing. After you and the doctor finish your testing follow-up, then we can send your report to you once we've finalized them. Additionally, any balances that you have with us need to be paid before we can send them out.
Call our office 72 hours before your appointment (3 business days) to avoid any cancellation fees. If you do not give us a 72 hour notice for a neuropsychological testing appointment, we will charge your account a non-negotiable fee of $300.00. If you do not give us a 72 hour notice for any other appointment type, we will charge your account a non-negotiable fee of $90.00. The 72 hour time frame gives us the ability to give that appointment time to someone else, if needed.
We appreciate any medical information or reports regarding you or any of the concerns that you are coming in for. You can bring them in, or have your primary physician fax them over. The more information we have, the better!
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