Community Forum Archive

The Epilepsy Community Forums are closed, and the information is archived. The content in this section may not be current or apply to all situations. In addition, forum questions and responses include information and content that has been generated by epilepsy community members. This content is not moderated. The information on these pages should not be substituted for medical advice from a healthcare provider. Experiences with epilepsy can vary greatly on an individual basis. Please contact your doctor or medical team if you have any questions about your situation. For more information, learn about epilepsy or visit our resources section.

Memory And Neuropsychological tests.. . kicked out?!

Tue, 06/14/2011 - 19:40

Wondering if anyone has ever had to discontinue their memory/neuropsych testing due to inconsistent unreliable results?

I went for testing for the first time today and after an hour of doing word and shape memory tests, (which I really was trying at) the Dr came in and said that they had to discontinue because the results weren't reliable and wouldn't help them diagnose me.

They said that people with senile dementia living in a nursing home had scored better than I had on those specific tests, and I couldn't be that badly off because I am a young mom at home with two small children, right?

I do appear to be pretty high functioning, but my memory and cognition and destroyed. . .

I asked why that would happen, and they said that they dodn't think I was trying to do it, but that sleep, medication, pain level, or unconscious stress could have made the answers different?! 

They said they will try again in a month . . . but  my question is, does anyone know about this?

Do I just look like a big faker?

Can you even fake these tests?

Thanks!

 

Comments

Re: Memory And Neuropsychological tests.. . kicked out?!

Submitted by pgd on Wed, 2011-07-20 - 14:48
Memory and neuropsychological tests do not do a good job at times at measuring some subtle neurology challenges such as central auditory processing disorder (CAPD) or petit/absence seizures. Also, some standard memory and neuropsychological tests do not do a good job at times at measuring the milder kinds of hemispatial neglect. Memory and neuropsychological tests may not help much in understanding some symptoms associated with prosopagnosia (face blindness) or synesthesia. Many psychologists lack good backgrounds in neurology. Within the area of sports concussions/brain injuries, there is a fairly new test called the Impact test which tries to measure a list of symptoms. Theoretically the Impact test is given to student athletes prior to starting sports and when a sports concussion occurs, the test is regiven then to see the difference. The Impact test is a start, however, at the level of the Olympics a number of athletes (snow skiing) have said they could be cleared to ski using the Impact test yet actually be quite dangerous to themselves on the slopes due to delayed cognition/delayed processing and the possibility of a second-impact event with potentially worse consequences. Some memory and neuropsychological tests are good for the masses in general but marginal, misleading, and even flawed (in major ways) for persons with some of the known subtle neurological challenges mentioned above. In some cases, if the testing is video taped, it becomes apparent the test taker is having subtle seizures and off into space cadet land. However, the average psychologist may lack the background in neurology and that ignorance will show up in what the psychologist can say to the customer - trying to blame the test taker for what are known to be neurological glitches. Some subtle neurological glitches occur in customers at the rate of 1 in 1,000 or 1 in 5,000 or 1 in 10,000 persons so the average professional in some cases may only rarely see persons with some kinds of subtle neurological challenges and misconclude they are not real because they are so very rare. Some professionals look at persons as individuals but others may look at persons only as customers to be pigeonholed - even if the pigeonhole is the wrong hole. They have a schedule to meet and customers to process/so many persons to process per eight hours to produce the office revenues they want.

Re: Memory And Neuropsychological tests.. . kicked out?!

Submitted by momashleigh on Wed, 2011-07-20 - 15:18

Wow. thank you. I was considering the idea that, since the psychometrist (who doesn't have a thorough knowledge of epilepsy) was the one who administered the tests, and had a very obvious bias towards me, that they may not be considering the validity of the tests in context.

I had a visual field test done at the neuropthamologist and I 'spaced out" (probably simple partial seizures) during the test. When I told her this, she said, yes, I can see, where, on the read out, this happened. She is unwavering in her seizure diagnosis.

So, why wouldn't that happen in testing? The psychometrist wasn't even watching me at the computer (the screen is a trigger for me, by the way. . ) She in no way observed me closely, except in one test where I had to replicate patterns. As I spaced out, I got completely discoriented, forgot what/how I was doing, and couldn't maneuver the blocks. She actually chuckled to herself at one point!

It heartens me to know these tests aren't the definitive measure of deficits and disabilities. 

 

Wow. thank you. I was considering the idea that, since the psychometrist (who doesn't have a thorough knowledge of epilepsy) was the one who administered the tests, and had a very obvious bias towards me, that they may not be considering the validity of the tests in context.

I had a visual field test done at the neuropthamologist and I 'spaced out" (probably simple partial seizures) during the test. When I told her this, she said, yes, I can see, where, on the read out, this happened. She is unwavering in her seizure diagnosis.

So, why wouldn't that happen in testing? The psychometrist wasn't even watching me at the computer (the screen is a trigger for me, by the way. . ) She in no way observed me closely, except in one test where I had to replicate patterns. As I spaced out, I got completely discoriented, forgot what/how I was doing, and couldn't maneuver the blocks. She actually chuckled to herself at one point!

It heartens me to know these tests aren't the definitive measure of deficits and disabilities. 

 

Re: Memory And Neuropsychological tests.. . kicked out?!

Submitted by happygirl on Wed, 2011-07-13 - 04:02

I recently had the neurophysc test done and I am amazed at what happened to you. Firstly, I did not realise that they could ascertain the results whilst you were still undertaking the test. It has been two weeks and I am yet to receive the result of my test as it was all conducted on paper etc and has to be reviewed.

The only thing that they may have been able to determine is how stressed you were as this will have an impact on the results, but for someone to have said what you have written is totally unacceptable and I would report them.

Absolutely lack of sleep, nutrition, stress can effect the score results - for me I am not quite sure what the benefit is of having these tests. i.e. what can they do once they results have been determined in terms of rectifying things. Of course you can fake these test - you can simply be dishonest and say that you only recall 2 words when in reality you recalled 15!

I had to have mine done pre surgery and they get you to do it a year post surgery, I kind of regret having it done as there is nothing that can be done no matter what the results produce. I know that I did badly in terms of memory - so i think this is more of a benchmarking tool for them.

They did say I apeared stressed (true) and that does impact on things - noone in the world would i let people speak to me like you were spoken to - NO WAY.

Interested to know who others are managing with their memory, cognative and conceptual skills (What ever that is). I get told on a daily basis that my conceptual and cognative skills are shocking yet have no idea how to improve on it?

 Thanks

I recently had the neurophysc test done and I am amazed at what happened to you. Firstly, I did not realise that they could ascertain the results whilst you were still undertaking the test. It has been two weeks and I am yet to receive the result of my test as it was all conducted on paper etc and has to be reviewed.

The only thing that they may have been able to determine is how stressed you were as this will have an impact on the results, but for someone to have said what you have written is totally unacceptable and I would report them.

Absolutely lack of sleep, nutrition, stress can effect the score results - for me I am not quite sure what the benefit is of having these tests. i.e. what can they do once they results have been determined in terms of rectifying things. Of course you can fake these test - you can simply be dishonest and say that you only recall 2 words when in reality you recalled 15!

I had to have mine done pre surgery and they get you to do it a year post surgery, I kind of regret having it done as there is nothing that can be done no matter what the results produce. I know that I did badly in terms of memory - so i think this is more of a benchmarking tool for them.

They did say I apeared stressed (true) and that does impact on things - noone in the world would i let people speak to me like you were spoken to - NO WAY.

Interested to know who others are managing with their memory, cognative and conceptual skills (What ever that is). I get told on a daily basis that my conceptual and cognative skills are shocking yet have no idea how to improve on it?

 Thanks

Sign Up for Emails

Stay up to date with the latest epilepsy news, stories from the community, and more.