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What to Expect for Your Neuropsychology Evaluation

Neuropsychologists work closely with referring doctors to provide guidance on diagnosis and treatment for people with various illnesses, injuries, and diseases of the brain that can affect neurocognitive functioning (thinking skills), mood, behavior, and capability for independence. 

Common conditions assessed by a neuropsychologist include dementia, concussion/brain injury, stroke, brain tumors, and Parkinson’s disease. Additionally, neuropsychological evaluations are required as part of a multidisciplinary pre-surgical evaluation for a number of conditions treated at St. Luke's, including for deep brain stimulation (DBS) surgery for movement disorders, epilepsy surgery, and as an important component of the lumbar drain trial for normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH).

Because evaluating these conditions is complex, neuropsychological visits are broken up into three phases, all of which can be completed in either two or three visits depending on the needs of the patient.

Initial Interview

Estimated appointment length: 2 hours 

During the initial interview, the neuropsychologist will gather patient history and cognitive concerns, discuss medical history, and determine the appropriate battery of tests to best assess cognitive abilities. 

We suggest you have a family member, close friend, or caregiver present for this appointment so they can help provide information. This is especially important if you have memory concerns.

Testing

Estimated appointment length: 3-8 hours 

At this appointment, you will work with a St. Luke’s psychometrist under the neuropsychologist’s supervision. A psychometrist is a highly trained testing technician who specializes in administration and scoring of neuropsychological tests. They will perform the battery of tests selected by the neuropsychologist based on the information gathered during the initial interview. 

You will be asked a series of questions and to perform tasks. Your neuropsychologist will be available for any questions you may have before or after the testing is completed. 

Bring the following to your appointment:

  • Glasses and hearing aids (if applicable)
  • Dentures (if applicable)
  • Snacks or beverages
  • Medications you may need during the day
  • Layered clothing for comfort

This can be a long day, so please do your best to get a good night’s rest. Please make sure to eat breakfast and/or lunch before your appointment.

Feedback

Estimated appointment length: 1-2 hours 

Results, diagnosis, and recommendations are reviewed and discussed with the patient/family. A clinical summary can be provided following the appointment and the patient’s referring provider will be notified of the test results. 

We suggest you have a family member, close friend, or caregiver present for the feedback appointment so they can listen, learn, and ask questions. This is especially important if you have memory concerns.

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