Neuropsychology investigates the relationship between the brain and behaviour. This covers a range of psychological functions such as perception, memory, thinking, language processing, attention, emotions and motor skills. Neuropsychology examines:
how these functions are carried out by the brain;
the consequences of damage to the brain for these functions;
how cognitive disorders as a consequence of brain dysfunction can be assessed and treated.
Such disorders may be the result of an accident, a stroke, degeneration in the brain (for example in Alzheimer’s disease) or abnormalities during neural development.
Neuropsychology and the assessment and treatment of cognitive problems is becoming increasingly relevant as a consequence of improved medical care. Many patients who would have died in the past currently survive, albeit with relatively serious disabilities. In addition, the general ageing of the population results in more age-related diseases which impact on cognitive function, making neuropsychological assessment and treatment more relevant.