Rinsho Shinkeigaku (Clinical Neurology)


Neuropsychological evaluation as a part of the neurological examination

Kyoko Suzuki

Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Yamagata University Graduate School of Medical Science

A systematic evaluation of cognitive function is an integral part of the neurological examination. Behavioral measures could detect functional impairment that is too subtle to be detected by current neurological procedures. Neuropsychological examination should cover both general and specific cognitive processes. The level of general attention or emotional change may affect variety of cognitive processes. Impairment of a functional system due to a focal cerebral damage results in a specific cognitive dysfunction such as aphasia, apraxia, agnosia, etc. Simplified but systematic methods to assess basic neuropsychological functions are suitable for everyday clinical examination by neurologists. A relatively short form of the cognitive status examination was devised, which covers general attention, language, calculation, praxis, visuospatial ability, directional attention and memory. Not only quantitative but also qualitative assessment of patients' performance would give clinicians valuable clues for the neuronal bases of cognitive functions.
Full Text of this Article in Japanese PDF (1561K)

(CLINICA NEUROL, 49: 83|89, 2009)
key words: cognitive function, neuropsychological examination

(Received: 10-Dec-08)