Monday, December 31, 2012

OBIT: Dr. Rita Levi-Montalcini

In The Guardian: Obituary

In The New York Times: Obituary

In The Economist: Obituary

Her 1986 Nobel Lecture: Nobel Lecture

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Neurobollocks: Molly Crockett's TED Talk

Dr. Molly Crockett's TED talk is a great addition to this season's blowback against neurobollocks. It is good viewing!

Molly Crockett - Beware Neuro-bunk
View Molly Crockett's TED Talk

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Neuropsychology Abstract of the Day: Telemedicine and Dementia

Telemedicine in a rural memory disorder clinic-remote management of patients with dementia.
Canadian Geriatrics Journal 2012 Dec;15(4):96-100. doi: 10.5770/cgj.15.28. Epub 2012 Dec 4.
Azad N, Amos S, Milne K, Power B.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:
There are many reasons to develop telemedicine clinics for assessment and management of dementia. Time constraints, location, and poor weather conditions can all impact on the ability of patients and providers to attend rural clinics. The utility of telemedicine in the diagnosis of dementia and subsequent follow-up appears promising in the literature, as it provides a viable means of assessing cognition in patients in remote areas with limited access to medical specialists.
RESULTS:
This study explored the feasibility of introducing a telemedicine memory disorder follow-up clinic in a rural community. The evaluation of 32 clinic sessions found high levels of satisfaction, with over 90% of physicians and patients indicating that they'd be willing to use video conferencing again. Physicians overwhelmingly felt the sessions provided enough information to assist in clinical decision-making (96%), and patients and CCAC Case Managers/Geriatric Assessors felt able to present the same information by video conferencing as in person (92% for both groups). The telemedicine clinic provided a number of favourable results such as: timely access to specialist care in the patient's own community; fewer cancelled clinics; enhanced care transitions between the follow-up clinic and primary care with the support of a case manager/geriatric assessor; and enhanced follow-up for a complex patient population. In addition, the telemedicine initiative freed up spaces for "in-person" clinics. This allowed them to focus on new patient assessments.
CONCLUSIONS:
The high satisfaction rates amongst all key stakeholders affirm that telemedicine is a viable option and worth continued efforts at shaping and developing, particularly in regions where local physician specialists are a scare resource.

PMID: 23259023 [PubMed - in process]

Friday, December 21, 2012

Neuropsychology Abstract of the Day: Alzheimer's Disease

Neuropsychological Signs of Alzheimer's Disease 8 Years Prior to Diagnosis
Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, 2012 Dec 19.
Schmid NS, Taylor KI, Foldi NS, Berres M, & Monsch AU.

Abstract

We investigated the earliest neuropsychological changes in Alzheimer's disease (AD) by comparing the baseline performance of 29 individuals who subsequently developed AD within an average of 7.91 ± 2.70 years with 29 pairwise-matched individuals who remained cognitively healthy (NC). We hypothesized that subtle, qualitative changes in cognition precede clinical AD by several years, and therefore examined subjective as well as standard quantitative measures of cognition, in addition to subjective estimates of mood and medical status. Participants were selected from the 825 members of the longitudinal BASEL study (BAsel Study on the ELderly), all of whom had been ApoE-genotyped and received comprehensive bi-annual neuropsychological assessments. Within 13 years, 29 were diagnosed with probable AD. Each individual who progressed to AD (AD-P) was pairwise matched to a NC participant based on age, education, demographic status, observation period, and, importantly, ApoE genotype. A regression analysis using the lasso technique identified which of 115 neuropsychological variables best discriminated baseline NC from baseline AD-P performance. This analysis yielded eleven neuropsychological variables that optimally discriminated the two groups (correct classification rate: 60.4%): 1) Intrusions and 2) response bias in verbal learning and memory tasks; 3) delayed figure recall; 4-6) three Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) Block Design subtest variables; 7-8) number of errors and repetitions on letter fluency; and 9-11) self-report of memory problems, a feeling of sadness, and cardiac problems. These results suggest that the preclinical neuropsychological cascade to AD includes subtle but identifiable qualitative impairments in verbal and visual memory, visuospatial processing, error control, and subjective neuropsychological complaints.

PMID: 23254631 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

Thursday, December 20, 2012

CNS Drug Development

A short but informative blogpost earlier today from the blog, In The Pipeline:

CNS Drug Development Claims Another Victim
Read the post

"Useful Neuropsychology Texts" from Neuropsych Bookworm

A blog entry from the 13th of December from Neuropsych Bookworm:

"Useful Neuropsychology Texts"
Read the blog entry

Sunday, December 02, 2012

DSM5 in Distress

The DSM's impact on mental health practice and research
by Allen Frances, M.D
02 December 2012

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/dsm5-in-distress/201212/dsm-5-is-guide-not-bible-ignore-its-ten-worst-changes

More About The "NeuroBollocks" Approach to Pop Neuroscience