- Reference Number: HEY-713/2019
- Departments: Neuropsychology
- Last Updated: 1 November 2019
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This leaflet has been produced to give you general information about the Neuro-rehabilitation Psychology Service. If after reading it you have any concerns or require further explanation, please discuss this with a member of the healthcare team.
Why have I been referred to the Neuro-rehabilitation psychology Service?
You have been referred to the Neuro-rehabilitation psychology Service because you have sustained an acquired brain injury, such as a traumatic brain injury (e.g. road traffic accident or assault), encephalitis (inflammation of the brain caused by a virus), brain tumour, anoxic/hypoxic brain injury (when the brain is starved of oxygen) or brain haemorrhage (a bleed on the brain). Reasons for referral often include:
- Establishing a baseline of function in order to assess future changes/improvements.
- Assessing treatment effects, including following neurosurgical procedures.
- Helping in rehabilitation and discharge planning.
- Assessing capacity and competence in specific areas (e.g. consent to treatment; return to work).
- Providing psychological interventions for any cognitive (thinking skills), emotional and behavioural problems following a brain injury.
- Providing education to patients and family/carers about the nature and cause of impairments after a brain injury.
How can a clinical psychologist / neuropsychologist help me?
Being assessed by a clinical psychologist / neuropsychologist can:
- Help you and your family/carers understand why you may be experiencing certain difficulties.
- Give you the chance to talk about your difficulties and the effect they have on your life.
- Help you to develop ways to cope with and adjust to your difficulties in day-to-day life.
- Help your family cope better and support you with the changes you may be experiencing.
What will happen when I see a clinical psychologist / neuropsychologist?
Your first appointment will last between 1.5 – 2 hours. You will be asked about your difficulties, how they affect you and some background information will be gathered. You may be invited to bring along a family member or carer to help with this if you are happy to do so. Further appointments may then be arranged, either for a more detailed assessment of your memory and thinking abilities, or to begin working on better ways of coping with your difficulties. If you require assessment of your thinking skills, a session will be arranged after the assessment is complete for the purpose of discussing the findings and planning any required treatment. The assessment process can take between 4-5 sessions.
What happens after the assessment?
You and your clinical psychologist / neuropsychologist will decide whether to meet again to talk more about your feelings, difficulties and/or diagnosis. You may then be offered some more appointments focused on treating or managing any difficulties identified. Treatment typically lasts between 7-10 sessions.
It is important to be aware that we do not see people who are more appropriate for other services or are unlikely to benefit from intervention. This includes people that have the following difficulties:
- Psycho-social stress, pre-existing or unrelated to their neurological condition (e.g. pre-existing marital problems).
- Primary psychiatric or social problems.
- Individuals at immediate risk of suicide or serious harm to self / others.
- Primary or current drug or alcohol abuse.