You may decide to see a neurologist who specializes in Frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) and related disorders. At the initial visit, the neurologist will review previous medical records (such as physician reports or previous neuropsychological evaluations), take a history from the patient as well as the caregiver, conduct a cognitive assessment, and perform a neurologic exam. Some patients will bring previous imaging studies such as MRI pictures on film or disk. These will also be reviewed with the patient and caregiver. An initial office evaluation typically takes about 60 minutes.
Your doctor will check your neurological health by testing your:
· Muscle strength
· Muscle tone
· Senses of touch, sight and hearing
During the appointment, your doctor will also conduct a brief mental status evaluation, which assesses:
· Problem-solving abilities
· Attention span
· Number skills
· Language usage
· Visuospatial skills
A follow-up visit may include a 30 minute re-evaluation by a clinician to look for changes in comparison to the previous evaluation, the appearance of new features, and evaluation of medication side effects. Some patients need to have additional testing, which may include a lumbar puncture to rule out infection and cancer. If the patient is enrolled in our research program, they can also expect 1-2 hours of cognitive testing and an MRI.