Clinical neuropsychology is the study of brain functioning and how this relates to thinking skills, emotions, behaviour and day-to-day function. Clinical neuropsychologists diagnose and treat the cognitive, emotional, and behavioural consequences of conditions affecting the brain. Clinical neuropsychologists undertake specialist postgraduate university training before being endorsed under national law, meaning they have recognised additional qualifications and expertise in clinical neuropsychology.
Neuropsychological assessment helps to identify a person’s cognitive strengths and weaknesses, and also how their condition might impact their behaviour and day-to-day functioning. A core part of a neuropsychological assessment is determining diagnosis and differentiating between different conditions.
A neuropsychological assessment includes a detailed clinical interview followed by completion of a range of standardised tests that carefully measure different aspects of thinking, behaviour or emotional functioning - all relative to age and/or other individualised factors. These are a combination of verbal, pencil-and-paper, puzzle and computerised tasks. Typical areas assessed include attention, concentration, processing speed, intellectual (IQ) functioning, learning, memory, visuospatial, language, problem-solving, logical, planning and organisation skills. Social, interpersonal and emotion recognition skills can be assessed as required.
Neuropsychological assessment is comprehensive and can take several hours in most cases. It can aid with diagnosis, treatment planning, careful tracking of cognitive health over time via quantitative testing, and cognitive rehabilitation. Additionally, it can help inform the clinical neuropsychologist’s opinion about a person’s fitness for work, capacity to make decisions or write a will.
Focus Neuropsychology offers comprehensive neuropsychological assessment for areas including dementia and memory, medicolegal, ADHD, autism spectrum disorder, neurology, acquired brain injury and learning disorders. A detailed report is produced following all assessments.