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Neuropsychology

The clinic was established in 1979 by the Department of Neurology of the Medical College Wisconsin and its affiliated hospitals. Adult patients are seen at Froedtert West. Children are seen at the MCW neuropsychology clinic located at the Children's Wisconsin in the Children's clinic building. Consultations are also made to other hospitals, attorneys and school systems.

Background: The Neuropsychology clinic was established in 1979 and serves both pediatric and adult populations at their respective clinic locations inside Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and Froedtert Hospital. The clinic provides neuropsychological assessment to children and adults and consultation to professional community agencies in the Southeastern Wisconsin region. Sara J. Swanson, PhD, is the Chief of the Division of Neuropsychology and the division consists of nine adult and seven pediatric neuropsychologists. The Division also includes fellows, clinical and research psychometrists, practicum students, and other dedicated support staff. Throughout all aspects of work and interaction, the division promotes racial and cultural equity in education, clinical care and research.

Clinical Mission: The Neuropsychology clinics at Froedtert Hospital and Children’s Wisconsin serve adults and children with a referral area that includes Southeastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois. The child and adult specialty clinics aim to evaluate, aid in diagnosis, help inform and direct treatment, and monitor cognitive changes over time. Several clinics operate in tandem with other disciplines, including neurology, neurosurgery, pediatrics, physical medicine and rehabilitation, cardiology, orthopedics, physical therapy, psychology, psychiatry, speech therapy, and social work to ensure comprehensive management of each individual patient. The child neuropsychology program offers specialty clinics or services including a medical and neurosurgical evaluation rotation, preschool and infant neuropsychological testing clinic (PINT), complex syndromes rotation, acute neurological inpatient evaluation service and follow-up clinic, autism clinic, and multidisciplinary sports concussion clinic. The adult neuropsychology program offers specialty clinics or services  including the Interdisciplinary Memory Assessment Program (IMAP), comprehensive epilepsy program, medicolegal evaluation service, neuro-oncology cognitive clinic, mild traumatic brain injury clinic, normal pressure hydrocephalus service, deep brain stimulation clinic, congenital heart disease clinic, post-stroke cognitive clinic, and general neurological assessment. In addition, neuropsychologists provide specialty brain mapping services including intra-operative cognitive mapping for brain tumor and epilepsy patients, functional MRI for mapping language prior to brain surgery, and intracarotid sodium amytal testing to lateralize language and memory prior to brain surgery.

Education: In addition to educating patients and their families, faculty and fellows make presentations to community and professional groups at the national and international level. Faculty give lectures on neuropsychological conditions and cognition to other academic departments at MCW. The neuropsychology program has trained over 100 fellows in its adult and child clinical neuropsychology post-doctoral fellowship program. The fellowship training program is accredited by the American Psychological Association’s Commission on Accreditation for Clinical Neuropsychology, is a member of the Association of Postdoctoral Programs in Clinical Neuropsychology and adheres to the Houston Conference standards for specialty training in clinical neuropsychology. The purpose of the fellowship program is to provide doctoral level psychologists with sufficient clinical and research competencies to practice independently in the specialty of clinical neuropsychology.

Research: Faculty from both the child and adult neuropsychology program actively participate in research and have published over 100 articles in the past five years. At present, research is being conducted on neurobehavioral aspects of aphasia, congenital heart conditions, dementia, dyslexia, epilepsy, genetic disorders, infant and preschool development, neuro-oncology, traumatic brain injury, sickle cell disease, spina bifida, electrical brain stimulation, and functional brain mapping with state-of-the-art imaging techniques.

Meet Our Team

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Joseph L. Amaral, PhD

Assistant Professor

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Julie A. Bobholz, PhD

Clinical Professor

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Benjamin Brett, PhD

Assistant Professor

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Alissa M. Butts, PhD, ABPP

Assistant Professor

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Christina Casnar, PhD

Associate Professor

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Lisa L. Conant, PhD

Associate Professor

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Amy Heffelfinger, PhD, MPE

Associate Professor

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Julie K. Janecek, PhD, ABPP

Assistant Professor

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Jennifer I. Koop, PhD

Associate Professor

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Michelle M. Loman, PhD

Assistant Professor

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Lindsay Nelson, PhD, ABPP

Associate Professor

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Sara Pillay, PhD

Assistant Professor

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Sara J. Swanson, PhD, ABPP

Chief, Professor

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Laura Glass Umfleet, PsyD

Assistant Professor

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Elisabeth Vogt, PhD

Assistant Professor

Programs and Fellowships

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Specialty Programs in the Neuropsychology Division

The purpose of the Neuropsychology Clinic is threefold:

Clinical Services
To provide neuropsychological assessment and treatment where indicated to children and adults, and consultation to professional community agencies in the Southeastern Wisconsin region.

Teaching
To provide instruction to medical and mental health professionals and students, and regional community agencies.

Research
To initiate research on topics of neuropsychological concern. At present, research is being conducted on neurobehavioral aspects of deep brain stimulation, neurodegenerative disorders, dyslexia, epilepsy, genetic disorders, infant and preschool development, multiple sclerosis, neuro-oncology and oncology, normal pressure hydrocephalus, traumatic brain injury, spina bifida, and functional brain mapping with state of the art imaging techniques.

Our postdoctoral residency program in adult and child clinical neuropsychology is accredited by the American Psychological Association’s Commission on Accreditation.

Sara J. Swanson, PhD is the Chief of the Division of Neuropsychology and the division consists of nine adult and six pediatric neuropsychologists, and a research neuropsychologist. The Division also includes clinical and research psychometrists, practicum students, and other dedicated support staff.

For children, we offer six specialty clinics:

The Medical and Neurosurgical Evaluation Rotation
This clinic provides an emphasis on epilepsy and children who may be candidates for resective surgery to treat intractable epilepsy, brain tumors, and vascular malformations.

The Preschool and Infant Neuropsychological Testing (P.I.N.T.) Clinic
This clinic provides comprehensive neuropsychological evaluations for children under 6 years old.

The Complex Syndromes Rotation
This clinic assesses children with rare and difficult to diagnose disorders such as genetic disorders, epilepsy syndromes, and differential diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders.

The Acute Neuro Rotation
This clinic's emphasis is on understanding and identifying cognitive dysfunction that occurs in acquired neurological injuries and infection such as traumatic brain injury, stroke, and encephalitis.

The Autism Clinic
This clinic provides evaluations for children under the age of 6 for whom the primary question is whether or not the child has an autism spectrum disorder. The assessment includes clinical interview, brief cognitive evaluation, and observation of the child in play with parents and peers. All participating providers and psychometrists participate in the observations and discussion of each patient for diagnostic clarity. The evaluation also provides detailed recommendations to help families navigate the autism treatment options.

The Multidisciplinary Sports Concussion Clinic
This clinic involves Neuropsychology, Orthopedics, Psychology, and Physical Therapy to evaluate and treat adolescents who experienced concussions in the acute and subacute phases of injury.

On the adult side we have nine specialty clinics or services:

The Memory/Neurodegenerative Disorders Clinic
This clinic focuses on neurobehavioral disorders of aging including a variety of neurodegenerative conditions affecting cognition. Clinical services are provided in the outpatient Neuropsychology Clinic and in the multidisciplinary IMAP (Interdisciplinary Memory Assessment Program) Clinic alongside the memory disorders neurologists and social worker.

Comprehensive Epilepsy Service
This clinic provides assessments for patients with medically intractable seizure disorders to assist in selection of patients for surgical treatment of their epilepsy. Neuropsychology fellows on this rotation conduct pre- and post-operative cognitive testing, assist or conduct intracarotid sodium amytal testing and functional MRI, assist in extraoperative stimulation mapping, and work with the multidisciplinary epilepsy surgery team.

General Clinical Service
Fellows on this rotation evaluate patients with a variety of developmental, neurological, psychiatric and somatoform disorders that are associated with impairments in cognitive and emotional capacities.

Medicolegal Evaluation Service
Faculty in The Neuropsychology Clinic conduct neuropsychological evaluations for medicolegal cases involving civil, criminal, and disability issues for individuals claiming cognitive impairment. Fellows work jointly with faculty on medicolegal cases and may have the opportunity to learn about the NFL Concussion Settlement Baseline Assessment Program cases, observe depositions, and trial testimony.

Neuro-Oncology Cognitive (NOC) Clinic
This clinic provides evaluation of brain tumor patients at the time of diagnosis, prior to treatment in order to establish a neurocognitive baseline. These patients are then followed throughout their treatments to monitor for potential tumor and/or treatment related cognitive and emotional changes and to assist in treatment planning. Fellows will attend weekly multi-disciplinary brain tumor conference, bimonthly brain tumor journal club, and have the opportunity to observe and assist in intraoperative cognitive mapping during awake brain tumor surgery using the NeuroMapper testing platform developed at MCW. In addition to brain tumor patients, patients with other forms of cancer are seen in the clinic for evaluation and treatment planning. The clinic is staffed by a neuropsychologist who works closely with a group of neuro-oncologists, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, and neurosurgeons. View more information on the Froedtert Hospital Neuro-Oncology Cognitive Clinic page.

Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI) Clinic
The mTBI clinic provides evaluation, triage and treatment to adult patients during the subacute (2 weeks to 12 months) period following injury. The Neuropsychology fellow conducts interviews, brief testing, reviewing neuroimaging, and providing feedback to patients in the early phase of recovery from TBI to facilitate return to work, school, driving and their pre-injury lifestyle.

Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus (NPH) Clinic
This clinic provides testing to aid in differential diagnosis of patients being evaluated for NPH. Testing is conducted prior to and following high volume spinal taps, lumbar drains, and ventriculoperitoneal shunting. This information is used to determine which patients will benefit from shunting. This clinic employs a collaborative team including a neurologist, neuropsychologist, physical therapist for gait assessments, and neurosurgeon.

Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) Clinic
The DBS clinic involves evaluation of patients who are considered candidates for DBS treatment for movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease or essential tremor. The aim of these evaluations is to identify any cognitive or psychiatric issues that may increase risk for poor outcome with DBS. Fellows work as part of a multi-disciplinary team that consists of neurology, neurosurgery, psychology, psychiatry, nursing, and rehabilitation.

Congenital Heart Disease Clinic
Fellows provide assessments to adult patients with congenital heart conditions. Neuropsychology fellows work with a multidisciplinary team within the Herma Heart Program that includes cardiology, nurses, social services, and neuropsychology.

Postdoctoral Fellowship Program in Clinical Neuropsychology
Postdoctoral Fellowship Policies and Procedures
Postdoctoral Residency Admissions, Support, and Initial Placement Data
Current Postdoctoral Fellows

Second Year
Carolyn Cook, PhD (Adult)
Priscilla Duong, PhD (Pediatric)
Lauren Miller, PhD (Pediatric)
Jessica Pommy, PhD (Adult)

First Year
Andrew Bryant, PhD (Adult)
Jacqueline Cudia, PhD (Adult)
Emily Kalschuer, PhD (Pediatric)