Dr Elsa Du Toit

MBChB, FCPsych, MMed Psych, BSc Psychology Hons

Psychiatrist / Psigiater

PR:0432520

 

Dr Paul Magni

M.B Ch.B FC Psych (SA)

Psychiatrist / Psigiater

PR:0299383

 

Dr Michael S Mason

M.B Ch.B. FC Psych (SA)

Psychiatrist / Psigiater

PR:0248320

 

Dr Azelle Mayne

M.B Ch.B. M.Med (Psych)

Psychiatrist / Psigiater

PR: 0151319

 

Anton Böhmer

B.Th M.A. Clinical Psych

Clinical Psychologist / Kliniese Sielkundige

PR: 864 1773

 

Monique Green

B.Occ Ther.

Occupational Therapist / Arbeidsterapeut

PR: 0224669

sandra

 

Sandra Hitchcock

MA Clinical SW

Family Mediator, Relationship Therapist

PR: 089 0000 277 525

 

 

Gustav Van Greunen

M.A Clin. Psych

Clinical Psychologist / Kliniese Sielkundige

PR:8633479

 

Leida Heymann

M.A Clin. Psych

Clinical Psychologist / Kliniese Sielkundige

PR 0487635

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NEUROPSYCHOLOGICAL ASSESSMENTS

Within the context of a memory clinic, cognitive abilities such as concentration, memory, language, perception, practical skills and skills required to plan, multi-task and organise ourselves (called executive functions) receive attention, as it important to assess these skills that relate to our abilities to perform activities of daily living and occupational responsibilities. Our ability to detect changes early within these “thinking areas” could provide important information to provide appropriate interventions.
Neuropsychology is the branch of psychology that addresses the link between brain and behaviour and involves cognitive assessments. This refers to an objective way of quantifying and characterising any cognitive, behavioural and emotional effects of the changes in brain function that can occur after a head injury or with disease that affects the brain. Therefore when someone is referred for a neuropsychological assessment, an interview will take place to discuss his or her concerns, if any changes have been noticed of late and other factors that might impact on cognitive function (such as depression, health problems, etc.).
A further benefit of a neuropsychological assessment might be to distinguish between neurological changes and psychological or psychiatric problems that might impact on, for example, concentration and memory functions. These problems could be reversible when treated with medication, a form of psychotherapy or both.
A frequent question is whether a brain scan does not provide enough information. Unfortunately the use of brain scans has certain limitations. They often help us to rule specific problems out, but do not always help to make a specific diagnosis. A neuropsychological assessment has the added benefit to detect subtle problems or to detect changes over time (when assessments are repeated over several months). Whereas brain scans can inform our view of specific changes and areas of the brain where changes are detected, a neuropsychological assessment could provide more specific information about the “functions” of the brain that is impacted on. This could be referring to specific memory abilities (e.g. verbal versus visual memory), ability to express or understand language or specific components of the ability to multi-task under pressure, etc.
Within the Panorama Psychiatry Centre, neuropsychological assessments take place within the framework of a multi-disciplinary team. Therefore, the Clinical Psychologist who completed the assessment will provide feedback to the referrer (this could be one of the Psychiatrists within the clinic) and discuss the outcome to the person who was assessed and, if appropriate and with permission, to their spouse or family. This discussion is important in order to advise about any possible changes that were detected, but also to maintain a view on strengths that were found. This informs a treatment plan and to plan appropriately for the future.
Within the Memory Clinic referrals can be made to an Occupational Therapist or Social Worker to provide further assessment or input as required. This might involve cognitive rehabilitation (when appropriate) or a therapeutic intervention for a couple or family. Alternatively, referrals can be made to relevant health professionals outside the Clinic when this is more appropriate (e.g. to a Speech Therapist). The Clinical Psychologists within the Clinic can also provide individual psychotherapy to help the person that was assessed with any emotional difficulties that might be related (or unrelated) to their cognitive difficulties.
Referrals can be made straight to the clinical psychologists at the Panorama Psychiatry Centre for a neuropsychological assessment, or alternatively to a Psychiatrist at the Clinic who might complete an initial assessment and thereafter decide on the benefit of a cognitive assessment and possible other assessment options (such as a brain scan, blood tests, etc.).

Neuropsychological assessments are also undertaken in Stellenbosch on Friday mornings.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

hypno

www.hitchcockmediation.co.za

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Psychology and Neuropsychology Services