Bay Area Neuropsychology – Optimal Minds Neuropsychology Group

Neuropsychological Assessment

A NEUROPSYCHOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT is the most in-depth and comprehensive form of evaluation that is specifically aimed at exploring the behavioral manifestations of brain dysfunctions across various neurocognitive domains. This assessment is a crucial tool in specifying whether an individual has actually suffered a brain injury, especially when the effects of the injury are subtle and may be mistaken by other factors such as stress, depression, lack of motivation, or undesirable “personality flaws”. While imaging studies such as CAT-Scan or MRI’s may not detect slight structural abnormalities in the brain when the insult is minor or diffuse, neuropsychological testing will show ways in which the individual is able or not able to perform certain tasks that are dependent on healthy brain activity, and can, therefore, diagnose brain dysfunction in the absence of identifiable structural brain abnormalities.

Thus, a thorough Neuropsychological Assessment will allow for early intervention and can answer simple but very crucial real-life questions such as:

The evaluation will be able to answer these real-life questions by providing specific information about the functioning of the following cognitive realms and how the deficits interfere with daily activities:

In addition, to providing relevant data on the “status” of these mental functions, a Neuropsychological Assessment provides an objective measure of the individual’s global intellectual potential or intelligence (IQ), and how their functioning in the various neurocognitive domains described above differ from the estimate of their true potential. An understanding of the individual’s psychological and emotional well-being and the extent to which unresolved issues or untreated clinical symptoms may contribute to the cognitive impairment is also derived from this evaluation.

A Neuropsychological Assessment will often involve not only the administration and interpretation of standardized psychometric measures, but also a thorough clinical interview to attain an in-depth understanding of the problems at hand, consultation with other relevant professionals and/or family members, observation of the individual in his/her natural environment such as school, nursing home etc., and a careful review of school, psychiatric, and medical records. The outcome of the evaluation is often very helpful in providing diagnostic clarification, assisting in educational and vocational planning, making disability and forensic determination, and establishing the guidelines for the development of an effective and comprehensive individualized Cognitive Rehabilitation Program. This type of assessment is often recommended for: 1) baseline testing before a treatment or intervention is implemented, 2) to follow the progression of cognitive development especially during significant transition times when a new level of demands are necessary and services may need to be redefined, 3) cases in which a brain-based impairment in cognitive and behavioral functioning is suspected and is believed to be due to:

Symptoms and behavioral presentations that may warrant a visit to your Primary Care Physician and a referral for a Neuropsychological Assessment include:

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Optimal Minds Neuropsychology
1399 Ygnacio Valley Rd Ste 3
Walnut Creek, CA 94598
Phone: (925) 389-6723
Fax: (925) 320-7275

Optimal Minds Neuropsychology
95 Montgomery Drive, Suite 112
Santa Rosa, CA 95404
Phone: (707) 522-0202
Fax: (925) 320-7275