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The neuropsychology services in Neurology and Psychiatry are located centrally in the UIHC and provide easy and rapid access to all parts of the Hospital, including inpatient units on the Psychiatry, Neurology, and Neurosurgery wards, outpatient Neurology and Psychiatry Clinics, and neuroimaging centers. Fellows are provided with secretarial services, computers with high-speed internet access and MEDLINE capabilities, laser printers, appropriate professional and scientific software, and other amenities to foster professional development. There are no outside placements or sites – all facilities needed to participate in the fellowship are located within the UIHC.
In the Benton Neuropsychology Laboratory and the Psychiatry Neuropsychology Service, neuropsychologists carry on a tradition of neuropsychological assessment that dates to the 1950’s and the early work of Arthur L. Benton. Neuropsychology at Iowa has led the field for more than a half-century, and continues to do so. The Director, Daniel Tranel, is a co-author of the latest (5th edition) of the Lezak book on neuropsychological assessment (Lezak, Howieson, Bigler, & Tranel, 2012). Many neuropsychological tests and experimental procedures that now enjoy widespread clinical utilization have been developed here. Standardized instruments for the analysis of all forms of higher behavior and cognition are available and are routinely used in the unit. A wide variety of neuropsychological services are provided, ranging from brief consultations that may take no longer than a half hour, to comprehensive evaluations that may take up to 8 or 10 hours of test administration. An integrated computer system for neuropsychological data management is in place.
Pioneering methods for lesion analysis were developed in the Departments of Neurology (Hanna Damasio, 2005; Damasio & Damasio, 1989) and Psychiatry (Nancy Andreasen - Iowa Neuroimaging Consortium) at Iowa. These methods revolutionized the lesion approach in studies of brain-behavior relationships in humans, and fueled the growth of world-renown research programs in cognitive neuroscience in both Neurology and Psychiatry at Iowa.
The Benton Neuropsychology Laboratory is located in the Roy Carver Pavilion of the UIHC, and is comprised of five examination rooms with extensive assessment instruments, a technicians’ office, two faculty offices, a workroom for students and faculty, a neuropsychological rehabilitation facility, and a reception center and waiting room. Three full-time technicians, as well as rotating practicum students, are available for assistance with assessments. There are private offices for the fellows (or shared with one other fellow). Fellows spend two-thirds of their fellowship (16 months) in the Benton Neuropsychology Laboratory.
The Psychiatry Neuropsychology Service is located in the John Pappajohn Pavilion of the UIHC and includes faculty offices, technician offices, office space for a fellow, and a reception area/waiting room. The Psychiatry Neuropsychology Service has two technicians who work with the four faculty neuropsychologists and fellows. While the focus of the Neuropsychology Service is on adult neuropsychology, all fellows will gain experience with pediatric neuropsychology cases as well. The fellow’s interests and career goals determine the specific proportion of time devoted to pediatric versus adult neuropsychology. Fellows participate in outpatient evaluations, inpatient evaluations, and specialty interdisciplinary clinics in Huntington’s disease and myotonic dystrophy as part of the Psychiatry rotation. Fellows spend one-third of their fellowship (8 months) in the Psychiatry Neuropsychology Service.
The Neuropsychological Rehabilitation Laboratory is dedicated to the development and administration of psychological interventions to facilitate recovery and rehabilitation of cognitive and behavioral impairments and emotional disturbances resulting from brain damage. Interventions and counseling are available to patients with varied neurological conditions and concerns, including sleep disorders, movement disorders, pain management, and cognitive decline. The detailed neuropsychological evaluations conducted in the Benton and Psychiatry services are used to guide systematic individualized treatment programs that draw upon findings from cognitive neuroscience, psychotherapy, and educational research. Neurological patients, their families, and their caretakers are provided with training in behavioral compensatory strategies, hierarchically-arranged cognitive retraining programs, and task-specific procedural learning techniques, in order to promote cognitive-behavioral competencies, functional independence, and emotional and physical well-being.
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