The Neuropsychological Evaluation: What to Expect!

Neuropsychological Evaluation

When an individual comes for a neuropsychological evaluation, they are often unsure of what exactly to expect. In today’s blog post, I will review what to expect during a neuropsychological evaluation: from scheduling through feedback!

  1. Initial Phone Consultation & Appointment Scheduling: Typically, a family member will call to request an appointment, either for themselves or for a loved one. At this time, I will ask about current concerns, explain the steps of the evaluation, and schedule the appointment. This is a great time for family members to ask questions and learn more about the process.
  2. Intake Appointment: I schedule the 1-hour intake interview with the client (or parent) approximately 1-2 days before the full-day evaluation. During this HIPAA-secure video call, I will ask about current concerns, gather the client’s history (e.g., medical history, educational history, etc.) and further outline what to expect on the evaluation day. For those that prefer, the intake interview can occur on the day of the evaluation, but I find that most families welcome the opportunity to speak candidly about their concerns from the comfort of their own homes.
  3. Evaluation Day: Evaluations last from approximately 9:00 in the morning to mid/late afternoon. I block the full day for the client, leaving ample time for rest breaks, brain breaks, and lunch! The client spends the day completing various tests or activities, including paper and pencil tasks, iPad tasks or computerized tasks that assess the different ways the brain is working. I assess memory, speed of processing, language, attention-  the list goes on! The evaluations are comprehensive in order to gain a full picture of the individual’s thinking, learning, emotions and behavior.
  4. Report & Feedback: Within 2 weeks, a comprehensive report is provided to the client or family. This includes information gathered during the initial interview, the results of the testing, a summary and integration of findings, provision of any diagnoses I feel are appropriate, as well as a list of home, school/vocational, and community-based recommendations. I most often schedule a video conference to review the report and my recommendations, though clients are welcome to return to the office if they would prefer to review the results in person. I want to be sure the information makes sense, and that families feel well-equipped to navigate the recommendations provided.

Though the evaluation is typically a one-day process, I remain available to clients, families and their related service providers to answer questions, discuss recommendations, consult with schools, and provide support. I am happy to hear when clients or family members are thriving, and equally as motivated to assist if future challenges arise.

I am grateful to families for entrusting me with the care of their loved one. I look forward to an ongoing partnership – here’s to many successes ahead!