We, at Schmidt-Trentadue & Associates, are frequently asked the same questions by many different lawyers. In response to this, we have decided to provide a new service to lawyers in the form of monthly Fact Sheets which we would like to invite you to receive. These Fact Sheets will contain scientifically-based information about brain injury and associated conditions, such as pain, PTSD, or mood disorders. We have attached our first monthly Fact Sheet. If you don't want to receive these e-mails or would prefer to receive them at another address please use the links at the bottom of this e-mail. If you know of others who would like to subscribe just have them drop us a line with their e-mail address and we'll gladly add them to the list. You can also find archived fact sheets as they appear at www.bcneuropsychology.com.
We will also be including practice news in the e-mails containing the fact sheets addressing more specific questions we are asked about the practice and information about happenings in the practice or field.
FAQ OF THE MONTH
This month’s most frequently asked question: How far in advance are you now booking and how long does it take to get reports? Although we have bookings over the next year because of expansion in our services we still have some openings within the next month. Our goal is to provide reports within four weeks of completion of our assessment. Currently our report turnaround time is averaging two weeks.
Please feel free to give us a call if you have any questions or need further information!
What Neuropsychologists Can and Can’t tell you about your client with a Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) can cause a range of problems. These are of four types:
Physical problems such as dizziness, tinnitus, nausea or headache,
Cognitive problems such as poor memory or decreased attention span,
Emotional problems such as increased anxiety, depression or irritability and
Behavioral problems such as impulsivity, loss of motivation or loss of interpersonal skills.
To fully understand the client’s problems the lawyer must seek input from a variety of medical and other health care specialists. In addition to determining just what problems exist, the lawyer also needs to know what is causing them and what effects they are having on the client’s functioning at home, with friends, in the community, and at work and/or school. So just where does the neuropsychologist fit into the mix?
Neuropsychologists are trained to assess the cognitive, emotional and behavioral effects of brain disorders. They do this using standardized tests of cognitive functions such as attention, language, learning, memory or problem solving, and tests of emotional and behavioral functioning. Comparison of the scores on such tests allows the neuropsychologist to identify specific patterns of dysfunction indicative of various forms of neuropathology (e.g., traumatic brain injury, dementia) and psychopathology (e.g., depression, post traumatic stress disorder). By integrating the test results with interview findings and a review of the records the neuropsychologist is in a unique position to determine the cause of any identified problems as well as to compensate for the influence of other factors such as age, education, or lack of motivation and make predictions about how these problems will impact on the client’s ability to function.
Although neuropsychologists are well acquainted with both physical conditions such as headaches or dizziness and measures of physical damage such as CT scans, MRIs or EEGs, it falls outside our area of expertise in the courts in British Columbia to determine the cause of such physical symptoms or to interpret such physical tests. However, the neuropsychologist can and will comment on the relationships between such physical conditions or physical findings and the individual’s cognitive, emotional and behavioral functioning.