approach involves the following steps:
It is essential to arrive at an accurate and proper diagnosis
because inappropriate treatment based on an incorrect diagnosis could have negative consequences. In arriving at a proper diagnosis I always start by taking a history during the initial visit. Then, for adults, I use the Connersí Adult ADHD Rating Scale (CAARS). Sometimes I also use the Wender Utah Rating Scale. The Connerís generates a profile with measures of various patterns of inattentiveness, restlessness, impulsivity and hyperactivity as well as cognitive problems, perfectionism, social problems and other relevant dimensions of psychological functioning. The results are evaluated in terms of normative data. This provides a comparison of the results with a normative group, which helps to establish an objective measure of the presence and pattern of problems that may be interfering with the patientís psychological functioning. In addition to having the patient complete this behavioral rating scale, I request that the patient have a relative or close friend complete the Connersí Adult ADHD Rating Scale Observer form. The comparison of the self-rating and observer rating profiles often provides important validating information.
Finally, in order to rule out the possibility that emotional factors may be creating symptoms similar to those caused by attention deficit disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADD or ADHD), I usually administer a Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2 (MMPI-2). The MMPI-2 is arguably the best researched and validated psychological personality test available. It provides a wide range of information, which can be useful in gaining insight into a personís feelings, behavior and psychological functioning.
A similar method is used to diagnose ADD and ADHD problems in children. The history is taken from the parents, and the Connerís' Parent Rating Scale and the Connerís Teacher Rating Scale are used to get objective behavioral ratings as observed both in the home and in the school situation. The Integrated Visual and Auditory Continuous Performance Test (IVA) can be administered to most children who are 6 years of age or older. It is scored based on gender and age related norms and provides information similar to that provided in testing adults.
The results of a thorough psychodiagnostic evaluation helps to determine the most appropriate form of treatment: psychological/behavioral, medication or a combination of both treatment modalities.
How can you decide who is the right professional person to help you with this kind of problem? You may get information about me at Marvin S. Beitner, Ph.D. You may get information about how to evaluate the credentials of any psychologist at Check Qualifications.
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experience, click on : Marvin S.
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Beitner's Blog Locations: If you live in Long Beach,
Lakewood, Los Alamitos, Cerritos, Cypress, Signal Hill, Rolling Hills or
Palos Verdes, you are within a 20 minute drive of my Los Angeles County
Office at 5199 E. Pacific Coast Hwy,
Long Beach, California (562) 498-0777. If you live in Huntington Beach,
Newport Beach, Newport Coast, Anaheim, Villa Park, Garden Grove, Santa Ana,
Westminster, Costa Mesa or Fountain Valley you are within a 20 minute drive of
my Orange County office at 11770 Warner Ave, Fountain Valley,
California, (714) 966-6634 or (949) 644-4641.
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