The loss of cognitive ability and the emotional changes that accompany brain disease and brain injury cause considerable distress to individuals and their families.
Neuropsychologists have expert clinical knowledge and training in brain-behaviour relationships and use this expertise to facilitate early differential diagnosis, education, counselling and management in brain injury or disease.
In later life, cognitive loss can occur very gradually, as a result of the early stages of dementia. It is not uncommon for cognitive complaints to be attributed to ‘old age’ and for individuals to be falsely reassured.
If you are worried about a decline in your own mental ability or the mental abilities of a loved one, come along for an initial consultation to discuss your concerns, or make arrangements to have your cognitive abilities examined professionally.
Cognitive decline is best evaluated early, as in some instances treatments are available. Stop worrying and take action.
What is Neuropsychology?
Neuropsychology is the study of brain dysfunction, resultant thinking difficulties and changes in mood and personality.
How does it fit in with other medical experts?
Clinical Neuropsychologists are brain/behaviour specialists with a minimum of 6 years training. We are called upon by members of the medical profession (i.e. GP’s, Physicians, Psychiatrists, Neurologists, Neurosurgeons and other Psychologists) or Lawyers, to provide expert opinion, management and treatment advice to individuals with known or suspected brain injury. A neuropsychological opinion is often sought when there are questions surrounding the cause of cognitive decline, the capabilities of an individual who has suffered cognitive loss or the optimal management/treatment of such an individual.
How can it help me?
Neuropsychological assessment can help to determine;
- If your cognitive decline is part of normal aging or not.
- What the underlying cause of your cognitive impairment might be.
- Whether your cognitive impairment is likely to resolve or progress.
- What can be done to treat or minimise your cognitive difficulties.
- Whether you would benefit from further investigations into the cause of your cognitive symptoms.
- Whether you are able to return to work and if so, which strategies would be helpful in supporting you to do so.
- Whether you are in a legally sound position to make or change a will or grant power of attorney.
- Whether you are safe to return to, or continue driving.
- Whether there has been a clinically meaningful decline in your cognitive abilities.
- What the family can do to assist with your cognitive loss.
What sort of conditions do you help diagnose?
- Alzheimer’s disease and Mild Cognitive Impairment.
- Focal Lobar Atrophies (Primary Progressive Aphasia, Semantic Dementia, Frontal Lobe Dementia, Posterior Cortical Atrophy).
- Post stroke cognitive loss.
- Cognitive loss secondary to traumatic brain injury.
- Pre & Post neurosurgical cognitive impairment.
What is involved in an assessment?
Neuropsychological assessments involve a combination of question and answer, paper and pencil and computerised tasks and generally last between 2 to 5 hours (depending on case complexity).
Is there anything I need to bring with me for an assessment?
If you make use of glasses for reading or hearing aids, it is important that you bring these with you to the assessment. It is helpful also, if you are able to bring along a spouse or close family member for the initial part of the consultation. For patients where English is a second language, it is possible to arrange for an interpreter to be present to assist with the translation aspects of the consultation.
Can you treat or cure my condition once it has been diagnosed?
In some cases, and for some types of brain disease, treatments are available. It is always helpful to have a clear and detailed understanding of the cognitive and emotional changes that have arisen and of how these relate to any underlying brain damage or disease. Understanding the symptoms of brain damage/disease facilitates effective ongoing management and care of an individual with cognitive losses.
What does it cost?
Please contact Dr. Lonie for further information and consultation pricing relevant to your requirements. Payment is required at the time of consultation and may be made by cash, debit or credit card (Visa & Mastercard are accepted).
Are Neuropsychological evaluations covered by Medicare or by my Private Medical Insurance?
Many private health insurance companies offer rebates for Neuropsychological consultations. If you have private health cover, you should inquire directly as to the level of rebate available under your personal health care plan. You will need to claim any available rebates directly from your insurer.
The Department of Veteran Affairs also offers a substantial fee rebate to members. If you are a member of the Department of Veteran Affairs, please inform Dr Lonie when booking your appointment so that prior authorisation can be obtained on your behalf.
Neuropsychology consultations are not presently covered by Medicare, however, this situation is likely to change in the future.
Can I make an appointment directly with Dr Lonie?
Yes, please contact Dr Lonie via email or telephone using the details shown on the contact page. You may require a formal referral from a medical or legal practitioner, however Dr. Lonie can advise in this regard.