Parent Page: Academic Departments id: 22749 Active Page: Adult Neuropsychology Labid:22752

Adult Neuropsychological Assessment Laboratory

The Neuropsychological Assessment Laboratory is located on the third floor of the Williams Pavilion building. We have on faculty five clinical neuropsychologists, three that hold Diplomate status in ABPP-CN, two psychology technicians, and two neuropsychology residents staff the laboratory. There are a total of seven full-time clinical neuropsychologists on campus. Of these seven neuropsychologists, three are board certified. Practicum students and psychiatry residents also frequently work in the lab. Referrals to this laboratory consist of two major types:  (1) neuropsychological referrals from neurologists, neurosurgeons, psychiatrists, attorneys, judges, workers compensation court, and Independent Medical Evaluations (IME) (their referrals comprise approximately 90 percent of the referrals) and (2) psycho diagnostic pain and psychological assessment referrals primarily from psychiatrists and other medical specialists (10 percent).

Interns assigned to the laboratory will gain experience administering, scoring, and interpreting neuropsychological tests.  The psychometricians however, complete the majority of test administration which gives interns time to develop other skills. Interns normally test only 4 hours per week.  Face-to-face feedback with referral sources as well as patients and family members is encouraged.  Opportunity to combine formal neuropsychological test results with mental status interviews, history data, and medical laboratory data are available. Interns also interview a significant other person of most patients to gain additional information. 

The lab sees primarily adult cases however child and adolescent cases are seen predominently from pediatric neurologists, neurosurgeons and hemotologists/oncologists. The patients seen in the laboratory have a variety of neurological disorders (head injury, dementia of many types {Vascular, Lewy Body, Alzheimer’s, fronto-temporal} intracranial neoplasm, cerebral vascular accidents, etc.).  We see epilepsy patients before temporal lobe resection for control of partial complex seizures.  Wada testing is completed on complex partial seizure patients.  Deep Brain Stimulation candidates are seen pre and post neurosurgery.  The lab also sees a large number of forensic cases, including personal injury and worker's compensation cases.  Interns have the opportunity to perform evaluations of chronic pain patients undergoing dorsal column stimulator placement, or pain patients in the Workers’ Compensation system. 

Interns attend neurology and neurosurgery rounds and teaching conferences as time allows.  A particularly interesting weekly activity is the Neurology Morning Report in which neurological cases are presented.  All interns on this rotation attend the weekly neuropsychological case conference and present cases at the conference several times a year. During this conference, participants present on various neurologic disorders and individual cases in detail followed by discussion by faculty, interns, residents and others attending the conference. 

The lab has access to elaborate video recording facilities, including soundproof rooms.  We routinely video record many neuropsychologically impaired patients during the mental status interview.  We then use the tapes for teaching purposes.  We have a library of literally hundreds of patient interviews of neurologically impaired patients of all types.  Since the lab sees a large number of forensic cases, the intern has some opportunity to work with the referring attorney or judge.  The supervising neuropsychologist frequently gives depositions or appears in court on the cases seen in the laboratory.  Interns are usually welcome to view this legal testimony.  

Research opportunities for interested interns are available. Each year a number of articles and papers are completed by faculty, interns, and postdoctoral fellows. We have a large computer database of over 9,000 former patient data, including neuropsychological results, demographic information, and diagnoses. This information is already coded on SPSS for those interns interested in applied clinical research.