The diagnostic process is only as good as the techniques and tools used to examine the patient. At our institute, we use precision diagnostics selecting neurodiagnostic tests that have the highest validity and reliability. Without highly accurate and precise tests, even the most skilled diagnostician would be at a disadvantage.
Like other clinics, our doctors rely on the patient’s history, interview with family members, brain MRIs, as well as collected data derived from various rating scales or questionnaires. Unlike most other neuroscience centers, however, we believe these diagnostic methods are important first steps but are insufficient to make accurate differential diagnoses.
At NCI, our doctors have access to both normative and clinical population databases. This is a relatively unique diagnostic asset as most centers rely only on normative database for their metric-based test comparisons. Normative database comparison is critical as it allows the diagnostician to compare a patient’s tests results against healthy individuals free from any neurological or psychiatric disorders. This allows doctors to determine if a cognitive or neuropsychiatric disorder is present. Our doctors at NCI also compare each patient’s test results to various clinical databases. This is to assess the degree of overlap between the patient’s test results and those of other patients with specific cognitive and neuropsychiatric disorders including ADHD, Autism, Brain Injury, as well as various neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease that causes dementia.
We have this capability for all of our diagnostic tests including:
Functional cortical assessment using neuropsychological testing (Watch video!)
Cognitive Event Related Potentials allow us to compare the QEEG results while the patient is completing various neuropsychological tests (Watch video!)
Quantitative PET – using traditional FDG to measure blood flow and glucose utilization in the brain and Beta Amyloid PET (Watch video!) which allows our doctors to rule out Alzheimer’s disease (Watch video!)
Structural MRI using quantitative measures, such as NeuroQuant® based on a standardized MRI brain atlas (Watch video!)
Perfusion MRI and CT of the brain (Watch video!)
Genetic analysis for Alzheimer disease and Frontotemporal Dementia (Watch video!)
Cerebral Spinal Fluid Analysis (Watch video!)
Most of these tests are non-invasive and allow our doctors to analyze each patient’s functional abilities, localize cortical dysfunction, and help us diagnose:
- Age-Related Cognitive Decline from Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) (Watch video!)
- The various sub-types of MCI Diseases causing dementias (Watch video!)
- Cognitive, behavioral and emotional disorder resulting from brain injury (Watch video!)
- Attention Deficit Disorder and other Neurodevelopmental disorders (Watch video!)
- Verbal and Non-verbal Learning Disabilities (Watch video!)
- Psychological from cortical disorders (Watch video!)
For more information, read:
Neuroimaging, Functional Brain Mapping and Neuromodulation