A neuropsychological assessment is usually triggered by a referral from a medical practitioner (neurologists, psychiatrists and GPs). We also accept referrals from nurse practitioners and psychologists. We don’t accept self referrals because it’s important for us to know the medical context for people’s concerns. Southampton’s neuropsychologists are part of the Wessex Neurological Centre, a specialist regional referral unit. Our services are focused on the diagnosis and evaluation of cognitive disorders rather than on their rehabilitation. We offer some basic advice on strategies and coping techniques but more extensive treatment for cognitive disorders is offered by local neurorehabilitation and older adult services (where work can be coordinated closer to home).
Neuropsychologists do not actually diagnose neurological illness. Instead, we provide neurologists and other practitioners with information about how the brain is working. As well as helping with diagnosis, we can monitor the impact of disease progression, assess the extent of recovery, and evaluate the effects of interventions (such as surgery or medication) on cognition and memory. Neuropsychological assessment can also provide valuable information for rehabilitation, including issues related to treatment, return to work or school, and return to independent living.