Treatments : Diagnostics

Cognitive Testing

Neurocognition refers to the higher brain functions: learning, remembering, concentrating, solving problems and making decisions. Neurocognitive testing helps your doctor evaluate the health of the higher functions of the brain. These processes are active in virtually all of our day-to-day activities and is increasingly recognized as a major factor in determining a person's quality of life.

Computerized in-office neurocognitive testing is a relatively new procedure, so you may have never been asked to take one. By reviewing your test results, we can assess whether you have cognitive impairments. Such problems may have many causes: medical, neurological or psychological.

The test will take about 8-45 minutes depending on what tests are taken. When you take the test, you should be in your best possible state of mind; not sleep-deprived, or overly stressed, for example. The tests will be taken in one sitting, however there will be breaks between each test allowing you to prepare for the next test phase. Try to relax, follow instructions, and do your best.

Every patient over the age of 50 should take a neurocognitive test yearly. When someone is being treated for a cognitive, neurological or psychiatric condition, testing may be done more frequently to monitor the effects of treatment.

Just as a doctor measures your weight and blood pressure, we measure your neurocognitive status. It is really no different than getting the same lab tests each year. Although neurocognitive tests can be given on a yearly basis, more frequent tests are suggested when there is a change in medication so we can evaluate and manage your condition over time.

Neurocognitive testing is appropriate to use in a variety of medical conditions. Specifically, some medical conditions that can be evaluated using neurocognitive testing include:

  • Memory Loss
  • Attention Deficit Disorders
  • Depression
  • Medication Adjustment
  • Brain injuries, and Other Conditions

CNS Vital Signs

Central Nervous System CNS Vital Signs (CNSVS) is a non-invasive, in-office neurocognitive testing procedure.  CNSVS allows us to objectively assesses a wide array of brain functions under stress (cognition stress test) and precisely detect cognitive impairments down to the millisecond. Your results are compared to a reference group of data to assist us in determining the level of neurocognitive impairments.

Similar to an EEG, the CNSVS is tracking your brain during specific activities and tasks. With over 50 different instruments to monitor your progress, CNSVS can detect and track even the slightest cognitive impairments. This information can help clinicians in both the evaluation as well as the management of your cognitive impairments. Additionally, the results of CNSVS can help the patient in many other aspects of life. For example, the data can assist in determining if academic accommodations are necessary if the patient is currently in school. Parents and family members can better understand the core reasons behind why certain daily activities may be challenging for you. Establishing a baseline in each patient can help with future treatment decisions as well. Another important piece of CNSVS is the ability to track your progress throughout treatment, be it medication, neurofeedback, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, etc.

The large neurocognitive database of results for ages 8 to 89 helps clinicians assess the level of neurocognitive impairment. Not all impairments can be seen on traditional scans (CT, MRI, etc.) but can be found using CNSVS. The two main reasons for utilizing CNSVS are to detect, identify, and track possible impairments that may not otherwise be found, and to be used in conjunction with information gained through clinical history and other psychological assessments.