About Neuropsychiatry

The Neuropsychiatric Clinic at Carolina Partners opened in 2012 with Director Sandeep Vaishnavi, MD, PhD. The clinic provides care for ages 6 and up in a diverse range of areas, including:

Traumatic Brain Injury     |     Dementia     |     Adult and Child ADHD

Mood Disorders     |     Developmental Disabilties     |     Neurological Disorders

What is Neuropsychiatry?

Neuropsychiatry is the nexus between Psychiatry and Neurology; it addresses the psychiatric manifestations of neurological disorders. A Neuropsychiatrist will take an in-depth look at a patient’s higher brain-functioning through examining and testing the brain in a holistic sense: What are the patient’s behavioral/psychiatric symptoms? Do those symptoms stem from a neurological source, like ADHD or an injury? How do we treat the symptoms and the physical cause (assuming there is one) in concert, without ignoring or exacerbating one or the other?

The Neuropsychiatrist’s job is to manage symptoms, continuously assess the patient’s improvement, and prescribe medication accordingly. Medical practitioners and patients are now turning to Neuropsychiatrists for definitive testing and treatment of disorders such as ADHD, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Seizures, and Movement Disorders. As the medical industry continues to shift towards more complete, integrative solutions for patients, we will see an increasing number of practitioners and patients seeking out Neuropsychiatrists for the best possible diagnosis and treatment of brain-based physical, psychiatric, and neurological disorders.

Evaluation and Treatment

The comprehensive evaluations include a neurological examination, a mental status examination, psychological tests and cognitive testing. Patients will experience a different evaluation based on their complaints or conditions. Our evaluations typically take around 4-6 hours and are performed by Dr. Vaishnavi.

Psychological testing is also used as a way to understand a diagnosis related to learning, attention or mood. Psychological testing includes nationally standardized measures and questionnaires to help understand how a person is functioning, and what this might mean for their present and future functioning. Intelligence, or IQ, testing can reveal an indivdual’s cognitive strengths and weaknesses. This is essential when someone is suspected to have a learning disability, a developmental disability, or giftedness.

What to expect?

An appointment at the Neuropsychiatric Clinic is different from a regular provider visit. You are receiving a highly specialized evaluation that is specific to your needs. This means appointments generally take 4-6 hours, but can also take up to 8-9 hours, depending on the complexity of the issues to be addressed by the evaluation and the patient’s condition (for example, fatigue, confusion, and motor slowing can extend the time required). Occasionally, it is necessary to complete the evaluation over 2 or more sessions. In general, the clnician attempts to elicit the patient’s best possible performance under optimal conditions.

  • Please bring a list of all current prescribed and over the counter medications
  • Eat and drink as normal on your appointment day. You may bring a snack or lunch, or plan to go out for a lunch break.
  • Expect to give a medical history. If this is difficult, we recommend bringing a close friend or family member for assistance.
  • The testing, which involves completing rating scales, survey-like questionnaires, and some cognitive tests, is done on both computers and paper. If this is difficult, we recommend bringing a close friend or family member for assistance.
  • Expect a brief physical exam.
  • Take all regular prescribed medications, however do NOT take stimulants (e.g. Ritalin, Adderall, Concerta, Vyvanse, etc) on the day of your visit.