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41 Cards in this Set

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What are the two major theoretical issues distinguish child Neuropsychology from adult Neuropsychology?
1. Adult models are “static” and are insufficient to understand the dynamic nature of the impact of early cerebral pathology

2. Physical/neurological, cognitive and Environment/ psychosocial experiences interact to influence development and recovery from injury.
What are the three Dimensions of Influence on Neurodevelopment?
1. The Physical or Neurological Dimension
2. The Cognitive Dimension
3. The Psychosocial Dimension
Development of CNS:

Four key issues? (timing and trajectory)
1. Prenatal vs post natal
2. Growth spurts
3. Hierarchical (posterior to anterior)
4. Stepwise vs Gradual progression
Damage to the CNS:

Three key issues?
1. Nature and severity
2. Timing
3. Generalised vs focal
What underpins cognitive development?
Neurological structures underpin cognitive development
Hierarchical development:

Developmental stages are characterized by what two things? (over the years)
Developmental stages characterized by:

1) increasing symbolic thought
2) the ability to deal with increasingly complex information
What emerges at 2+ yrs?
2+ yrs emergence of symbolic thought characterized by language, communication and imagery
What emerges at 7+ years?
7yrs increased reasoning and problems solving ability
What do neuropsychologists need to understand the cognitive dimension of development?
Need to understand normal development and normal variations in development in order to understand what is a deviation from normal development
Neuropsychological impairment in children must be measured against what?
Neuropsychological impairment in children must be measured against age appropriate expectations
What is the problem of using adult tests with children?
Tests developed for use in adults do not always measure the same dimensions of function in children
Major developmental processes in the neurological dimension:

Three important processes at the pre-natal stage?
1. Structural formation
2. Neuronal migration
3. Synaptogenesis
Major developmental processes in the neurological dimension:

Two important processes at the post-natal stage?
1. Myelenation
2. Dendritic elaboration
Drugs, alcohol and environmental toxis can induce what?
Drugs, alcohol and other environmental toxins can induce pathological changes in the brain and cause long-term neurocognitive deficits.
The period of peak vulnerability coincides with:
The period of peak vulnerability coincides with various periods of rapid development.
Disruption to pre and peri-natal development:

What prescription meds are most problematic? (2)

Anti-epilepsy meds, Thalidomide
Disruption to pre and peri-natal development:

5 key threats?
1. Prescribed medication
2. Alcohol abuse
3. Heroin, Cocaine etc
4. Anaesthetic (?)
5. Prematurity
IQ scores generally increase what what two things?
IQ scores generally increase linearly with gestational age (GA) and birth weight
Birth several weeks before (27-28 weeks GA) term has been associated with what three things?


1. poorer health outcomes
2. lower IQ
3. increased academic disability
Low IQ scores on both verbal and performance measures have been reported to....
Low IQ scores on both verbal and performance measures have been reported to continue into later childhood and adolescence.
What is the most common behavioural disorder related to pre-term birth?
The most common behavioural disorder related to attention difficulties in VPT/VLBW population is ADHD
Preterm children were on average __.__ times more likely to have ADHD than controls.
found that preterm children were on average 2.6 times more likely to have ADHD than controls.
What three things disrupt the psychosocial dimension? (think Poland Orhpanages)
1. Lack of environmental stimulation
2. Severe parental neglect / abuse
3. Severe trauma
What maternal issue impacts on neurological, cognitive, social and emotional development in the child?
Psychiatric disturbance in the mother (depression) impacts on neurological, cognitive, social and emotional development in the child
What is an important example of disrupted development in prenatal period?
Neural tube defects: Spina bifida
Spina bifida =
Anencephaly =

Prevalence?
Spina bifida = open spine
Anencephaly = open skull

1 in 1000 pregnancies
What is spina bifida in a nutshell?
Abnormal development of the back bones, spinal cord, surrounding nerves, and the fluid-filled sac that surrounds the spinal cord. This neurological condition can cause a portion of the spinal cord and the surrounding structures to develop outside, instead of inside, the body.
What is Spina bifida occulta and how severe is it?
Spina bifida occulta: (mild) spinal cord and the surrounding structures remain inside the body, but the lower spine fails to form normally. There may be a hairy patch, dimple, or birthmark over the area of the defect.
What is Meningocele and how severe is it?
Meningocele: (moderate) a fluid-filled sac is visible outside of the back area. The sac does not contain the spinal cord or nerves.
What is Myelomeningocele and how severe is it?
(severe) spinal cord and nerves develop outside of the body and are contained in a fluid-filled sac visible outside of the back area. Weakness and loss of sensation below the defect. Problems with bowel and bladder function. A majority will have hydrocephalus.
How long does it take for the neural tube to close after conception?
The neural tube closes 28 to 32 days after conception
Five key factors in the aetiology of spina bifida?
1. exposure to hazardous chemicals/substances
2. lack of proper vitamins and nutrients in the diet (folic acid)
3. infection
4. prescription drugs
5. alcohol consumption
Spina bifida is associated with what key condition?
hydrocephalus
What is Hydrocephalus?
Hydrocephalus results from a condition that causes the Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) to build up in the ventricles of the brain, causing pressure inside of the head to increase and the skull bones to expand to a larger than normal size and associated cognitive deficits.
Plasticity vs Vulnerability:

Plasticity** two theoretical arguments?
1. The child’s brain is immature and less susceptible to the impact of cerebral damage than the adult brain.

2. Functional organisation is less committed in the immature brain than it is in the adult brain and has a greater capacity for transferring functions from damaged cerebral tissue to healthy tissue.
Plasticity vs Vulnerability:

Vulnerability*** position argues that (3)?
1. Brain insults occurring during childhood are particularly detrimental to development.

2. Some aspects of cognitive development are critically dependent on the integrity of particular cerebral structures at certain stages of development.

3. If reorganization of function does occur, it may lead to a “crowding” effect where the functions normally subsumed by two healthy hemispheres are crowded into one, with a general depression of all abilities
Mechanisms of change after injury:

Recovery = ?
Skills continue to improve over time
Mechanisms of change after injury:

Arrest = ?
Skills stop developing at a particular point or after a specific event
Mechanisms of change after injury:

Plateau =
Skills improve to a limit and then stop improving
Mechanisms of change after injury:

Failure to acquire =
A new set of skills fail to develop
Mechanisms of change after injury:

Growing into the deficit =
Some improvement or development occurs but at a slower rate that age peers