Memory Disorders Assessment

We take great care to conduct a thorough evaluation of each patient, spending the time necessary to make an accurate diagnosis of the cause of the patient's symptoms. We employ several tools to make a diagnosis, using only those needed to assess each patient. These include:

  • Neurologic examination
  • Assessment of memory and other thinking abilities (neuropsychological testing), conducted by specially trained professionals who tailor the evaluation to each patient's needs
  • Brain imaging, utilizing the tools and expertise of NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell's renowned neuro-imaging program
  • Blood tests
  • Spinal fluid examination, if necessary, to refine the diagnosis; we developed a spinal fluid test for Alzheimer's that is not available elsewhere

In most cases, we complete a patient's initial assessments in one to three visits. During the assessment stage of a patient's care, we can also arrange for consultations with social workers and for Alzheimer's-related genetic testing for family members. Our physicians also provide second opinions.

Treatment and Support

NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell is known for our excellent care of patients with Alzheimer's disease, as well as normal pressure hydrocephalus, a reversible disorder that can often be resolved with surgery. Our physicians are also working to develop new medications to treat this cause of dementia.

For patients with Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia, our doctors may prescribe certain medications to minimize the cognitive impairment caused by the illness. They may also use medications to treat other symptoms of these disorders, such as depression, agitation, hallucinations, delusions, and insomnia.

We understand that in most cases, dementia is irreversible and progressive, and that patients, families, and caregivers need guidance and support. Our staff includes a social worker who is dedicated to working with Alzheimer's disease patients and their families, who works closely with the Alzheimer's Association, and who can help link families with the resources they need. Our team also includes specialists in cognitive rehabilitation and psychiatric support.

Because memory disorders occur more frequently in older individuals, we also consult with specialists in the Irving S. Wright Center on Aging of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell, which is dedicated to providing older adults with comprehensive care so that they can lead fulfilling and independent lives.

Alzheimer's Prevention Clinic

Alzheimer's disease doesn't just affect the patient; it affects the entire family. The Alzheimer's Prevention Clinic (APC) at Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian was founded in 2013 by Dr. Richard Isaacson, who has several family members affected.

The clinic focuses on cutting-edge prevention strategies & comprehensive education for the whole family. Learn more about the clinic.