The Neuropsychological Assessment of Neuropsychiatric and Neuromedical Disorders, Third Edition, provides a comprehensive discussion of major perspectives regarding neuropsychological assessment in both clinical and empirical contexts. Like earlier editions, Grant and Adams organize the text into three major sections. The first group of chapters includes a careful review of different well-known and widely practiced theoretical approaches (i.e., Boston Process, Iowa–Benton, Analytical, and Halstead–Reitan), providing neuropsychologists with an invaluable resource for contextualizing their training and approach to neuropsychological practice within a historical perspective. Considerable attention is focused on the practical considerations that shape the assessment, scoring, and interpretive process of neuropsychological work, for example, test selection (e.g., a review of screening instruments), computer-based testing, and the use of demographically corrected norms (e.g., for age, education level, gender, race, and ethnicity). The second section provides an excellent overview of a variety of neuropsychiatric and neuromedical disorders from a neuropsychological perspective, including dementia, Parkinson's and Huntington's disease, epilepsy, hypoxia, HIV, alcoholism, and drug abuse. Chapters also address neuropsychological impairments associated with schizophrenia, depression, and mood-related disorders. Discussion is further expanded from the more traditional localization of brain function due to head injury or neurodegenerative disease into the realm of various causes of neurocognitive morbidity, such as inflammatory disease and exposure to heavy metals. The third and final section of the book details the psychosocial consequences of neuropsychological impairment (e.g., ecological validity of neuropsychological assessment, adherence to treatment regimens, driving assessments, and behavioral disorders associated with traumatic brain injury).
Overall, the edited chapters of this book, written by experts in their respective areas, make a unique and creative contribution to neuropsychology and neuropsychiatry. Further, the text strikes an excellent balance, including both thematic review and new up-to-date information.
There are numerous aspects of the Neuropsychological Assessment of Neuropsychiatric and Neuromedical Disorders, Third Edition, which are worth highlighting. First, compared with the previous version, this newer edition provides the reader with more complementary visual material. Discussions within each of the content areas are enhanced by several well-chosen diagrams, structural and functional imaging findings (e.g., MRI, structural morphometry, diffusion tensor imaging, and SPECT; presented in both color and black-and-white), and visually presented research data (e.g., graphs and tables). Second, the structure and organization of the book is such that it facilitates practical use for case formulations. For each major class of disorders, neuropsychological profiles are introduced, along with psychological implications, neuroanatomical and neurofunctional impairments, and viable treatments. Where applicable, common differential diagnoses with comorbid disorders are also discussed. Lastly, the impact of neuropsychological status on daily functioning, driving, and adherence to medical treatments, all discussed within this volume, are important areas of neuropsychology that are often ignored in the literature. The presentation of the “real-world” impact of medical and psychiatric disorders nicely contextualizes the disorders discussed within the text, as well as provides clinicians with assessment strategies and ideas for improving their patients' level of adaptive functioning.
Although very highly recommended, there are a few aspects of this text that could be improved. For instance, although the different theoretical approaches to assessment were discussed individually, it would have been helpful to have an additional chapter attempting to integrate these approaches in light of the eclectic framework from which many clinicians currently practice. At times, several of the chapters are somewhat limited in scope and breadth, necessitating the use of supplemental texts and resources. For instance, many chapters lack a comprehensive discussion of the mood-related, behavioral, and socioemotional disturbances frequently comorbid with the neurological disorders presented throughout the book. Also, the Neuropsychological Assessment of Neuropsychiatric and Neuromedical Disorders largely focuses on methodological approaches and clinical applications specific to adult populations. Thus, its content is less applicable to individuals with a strong interest in the assessment of children and adolescents. Finally, although the text discusses clinically significant attentional disturbance and anxiety within the context of other conditions, comprehensive chapters on these topics (i.e., Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Anxiety Disorders) would have been useful additions to this otherwise well-rounded book.
In conclusion, the Neuropsychological Assessment of Neuropsychiatric and Neuromedical Disorders, Third Edition, is an excellent, very interesting, and useful updated reference for clinicians and researchers at all stages of their careers and training within neuropsychology, neurology, psychiatry, and rehabilitation. Grant and Adams (2009) continue to provide readers with a thoughtfully edited resource examining the past, present, and future of neuropsychological assessment within the context of a wide range of neurological, psychiatric, and general medical disorders. Their book will surely continue to be a cornerstone within these fields.