Publications by authors named "Chris E Morrison"

5 Publications

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Neuropsychology Within a Tertiary Care Epilepsy Center.

Arch Clin Neuropsychol 2018 May;33(3):354-364

New York University School of Medicine, Department of Neurology, New York, NY, USA.

Epilepsy is a prevalent condition characterized by variations in its clinical presentation, etiology, and amenability to treatment. Through history, neuropsychologists have played a significant role in performing research studies on changes in language, memory, and executive functioning in patients with epilepsy, including those undergoing surgical treatment for medically refractory seizures. These studies provided a foundation for establishing neuropsychologists as critical members of interdisciplinary clinical teams specializing in evaluation and treatment of epilepsy. This article describes a number of elements of specialized neuropsychological practice that have evolved over the years within a tertiary care epilepsy center. Through diagnostic interview and objective testing, the neuropsychologist is able to provide a more complete and objective understanding of a patient's cognitive and behavioral functioning than what is obtained by other clinicians through brief office visits. While assessment of cognition, mood, and behavior is the most commonly provided service to patients with epilepsy from all age groups, there are many instances when neuropsychologists in surgical settings are called to perform more specialized procedures, including the intracarotid amytal (Wada) procedure, electrocortical stimulation mapping of language eloquent brain regions, and functional brain imaging procedures. While working as a neuropsychologist on an interdisciplinary epilepsy care team requires specialized knowledge and clinical training, it is extremely satisfying due to the diversity of the patient population and the particular challenges resulting from the often unique manner that cognition and behavior can be affected in patients with epilepsy across the lifespan.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/arclin/acx134DOI Listing
May 2018

The impact of education and acculturation on nonverbal neuropsychological test performance among Latino/a patients with epilepsy.

Appl Neuropsychol Adult 2014 13;21(2):108-19. Epub 2013 Aug 13.

a NYU Langone Medical Center, Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, and Neurology, New York University School of Medicine , New York , New York.

The present study examined the relationship between various sociocultural factors (e.g., acculturation, education), neurological variables (e.g., epilepsy duration and seizure frequency) and nonverbal neuropsychological (NP) test performance in a sample of 305 Latino/a and Non-Latino/a White adults with and without epilepsy. All participants completed nonverbal NP measures of visuospatial skills, memory, executive functioning, and psychomotor speed. An acculturation scale was administered to Spanish-speaking epilepsy patients and controls. Education was strongly correlated with performance on all but one of the nonverbal measures across the entire sample. Among Spanish-speaking Latino/a patients with epilepsy, level of acculturation to U.S. culture was associated with a measure of behavioral inflexibility (p < .05) and with a composite measure of nonverbal NP test performance (p < .05). Finally, the results of hierarchical regression models showed that sociocultural factors accounted for a greater proportion of variance in nonverbal NP test performance than did neurological factors. These results provide further evidence that sociocultural factors are strong predictors of NP test performance in clinical populations, even on nonverbal tests. Assessment of acculturation may be as critical as assessment of disease factors in interpreting cognitive performance in Latino/a individuals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09084282.2013.768996DOI Listing
December 2014

The intracarotid amobarbital procedure: when is it worth repeating?

Epilepsia 2012 Apr 6;53(4):721-7. Epub 2012 Feb 6.

Department of Neurology, New York University School of Medicine, New York, New York 10016, USA.

Purpose: Despite the reported diagnostic value of the intracarotid amobarbital procedure (IAP) or "Wada test" for determining hemispheric lateralization and memory functioning, it has never undergone formal reliability testing because a prospective test-retest study design is neither feasible nor ethical. However, some patients require repeat testing for clinical purposes, a circumstance that allows for exploration of issues related to reliability. The current investigation sought to: (1) evaluate the frequency of and reasons for repeated IAPs and (2) describe the test-retest reliability of repeated IAPs in a large tertiary epilepsy center.

Methods: A 10-year review (2001-2011) of the New York University Langone Medical Center Comprehensive Epilepsy Center patient registry revealed 630 IAPs. Review of medical records identified 20 individuals who underwent two or more IAPs on separate days. Because IAPs repeated due to technical problems should be considered separate from IAPs repeated for other reasons because these IAPs likely included a change in the procedure (e.g., lower medication dose) in an attempt to ameliorate the complication, patients were grouped accordingly. Six patients underwent repeated IAPs due to technical complication and 14 patients underwent a repeated IAP due to other reasons (e.g., unexpected memory outcome, reconsideration of surgery years after a previous surgical work-up in which no surgery was performed, and/or consideration of a second surgery). Given that data obtained from injections ipsilateral to a seizure focus are sometimes considered in a manner clinically different from data obtained from injections contralateral to the seizure focus, memory outcome was classified relative to the side of identified seizure focus. The degree to which language and memory data were consistent across repeated IAPs was examined.

Key Findings: Language functioning was consistently lateralized across IAPs in all but one case. Among the six patients who experienced technical problems in the first IAP, three were fully participatory in the second procedure such that valid data were obtained. For the other three, the technical problem recurred with no change in outcome across procedures. Among the 14 patients with repeated IAPs due to other reasons, 79% of the available ipsilateral and 73% of the contralateral pass/fail outcomes were consistent across procedures. No difference between ipsilateral or contralateral injections was observed for the likelihood of a change in results (p = 0.57).

Significance: Our data identified overall high reliability for both the ipsilateral and contralateral sides with repeated IAP testing. Results indicated that although patients for whom a correctable technical problem was identified during the IAP may benefit from a repeat study, there is little benefit to repeating the IAP in patients with discordant or unexpected results (i.e., results are not likely to change). These data support the overall reliability of both the language and memory data obtained from the IAP.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1528-1167.2011.03399.xDOI Listing
April 2012

Comparing the convergent validity and clinical utility of the Behavior Assessment System for Children-Parent Rating Scales and Child Behavior Checklist in children with epilepsy.

Epilepsy Behav 2008 Jul 29;13(1):237-42. Epub 2008 Apr 29.

Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, Department of Neurology, New York University Medical Center, 403 East 34th Street, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10016, USA.

The convergent validity and clinical utility of two parent-report child behavior rating scales, the Behavior Assessment System for Children-Parent Rating Scales (BASC-PRS) and Child Behavior Checklist/Ages 6-18 (CBCL), in children with epilepsy were examined. Analogous broadband and narrowband behavior rating scales were evaluated in 60 subjects aged 6-17 years (mean=11.0, SD=3.4) with Full Scale IQ >70. Correlations for each similarly labeled scale were statistically significant (P<0.002) and greater with broadband (r=0.71-0.79) than with narrowband (r=0.41-0.78) scales. The BASC captured significantly less composite internalizing symptoms (P<0.002), but more unusual thought processes (P<0.0002) and attention problems versus a CBCL DSM-oriented attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder scale (P<0.002). Variation in the correlations between measures may stem from underlying differences between rationally-and empirically-derived approaches to test construction. Both the CBCL and BASC have diagnostic and clinical utility in assessing behavior problems in pediatric epilepsy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.yebeh.2008.03.007DOI Listing
July 2008

Neuropsychological features of lesion-related epilepsy in adults: an overview.

Neuropsychol Rev 2007 Dec 19;17(4):385-403. Epub 2007 Oct 19.

Department of Neurology, Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, New York University Medical Center, 403 E 34th St., 4th Floor, New York, NY, 10016, USA.

Lesional epilepsy is thought to be a direct consequence of focal brain lesions of dysgenetic, neoplastic, vascular, or traumatic origin. It has been estimated that at least half of all epilepsies are the result of such lesions. The current discussion includes an overview of the cognitive and behavioral presentations in adults with epilepsy secondary to focal pathology. The neuropsychological presentation in this population is influenced by many factors, including the location and nature of the underlying lesion, seizure characteristics, the effects of treatment, and patient variables. Few studies attempt to disentangle the specific contributions of these variables to cognitive performance. However, where available studies examining the separable effects of seizure-related variables on cognitive functioning in individuals with lesional epilepsy are also reviewed. This overview includes a discussion of focal malformations of cortical and vascular development and select foreign tissue and acquired lesions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11065-007-9044-8DOI Listing
December 2007