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Adaptive Equipment
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Cognitive Assessment
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Craniosacral Therapy
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Falls Prevention Clinic
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Positional Release
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Sensory Integration Therapy
Soft Tissue Technique
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Strategic Orthopedics
Swallowing Therapy
Therapeutic Listening Program
Total Joint Rehab Class
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
Ultrasound Therapy
Urinary Incontinence Therapy
Vestibular Rehab & Balance
Video Fluoroscopy
Wheelchair Evaluation
Work Conditioning
Work Site Analysis
Wound Therapy

Cognitive Assessment

The first symptoms of cognitive impairment may be hard to detect and could appear as normal signs of aging. Things such as forgetting names and phone numbers, and losing items more often than usual are often accepted as a normal part of aging.

In the early onset, things may emerge slowly and go unrecognized. When these symptoms start affecting daily life, it may be time for concern.

Common Symptoms of Cognitive Change

If one or more of these symptoms is noticed, it may be cause for concern.

  • memory loss
  • problems doing familiar tasks
  • problems with language
  • trouble knowing the time, date, or place
  • poor or decreased judgement
  • problems with abstract thinking
  • misplacing things often, such as keys
  • changes in mood and behavior
  • changes in personality
  • loss of interest in starting projects or doing activities

What should you ask?

  • Is the person forgetting things more often, such as appointments, people's names, or telephone numbers? Is the forgetfulness affecting his or her ability to get things done?
  • Does the person forget birthdays, anniversaries, family occasions, or holidays?
  • Is the person having a hard time doing familiar tasks, such as buttoning his or her shirt, paying bills, using VCR, doing housework, shopping, or taking medications?
  • Does the person need reminders to do things like household chores, shopping, and taking medications?
  • Is the person putting things in strange places, such as placing keys in the refrigerator?
  • Is the person forgetting common words or losing his or her train of thought while talking?
  • Is the person having a hard time doing complex tasks, such as balancing a checkbook or keeping track of plots in movies or books?
  • Have you noticed that the changes in the person's behavior are leaving the person confused, suspicious, or afraid?
  • Does the person become defensive when questioned about things?
  • Does the person often "joke around" when asked questions and never truly answer the question posed?
  • Is the person sometimes confused about what day it is or how to get to familiar places, such as his or her own home or the store?
  • Has the person lost interest in hobbies, clubs, or other things he or she used to enjoy?
  • Have you noticed that the person is avoiding other people, including family and friends?
  • Does the person have a harder time now making choices than in the past?
  • Does the person often repeat himself or herself or ask the same questions over and over?
  • Is there a decrease in the person's quality of self care skills, such as wearing the same clothing many days in a row and/or having body odor?
  • Are there concerns about the person driving, for example, getting lost or driving unsafely, or has had to stop driving?

Cognitive Performance Test Overview and Research

The Cognitive Performance Test is a standardized, performance-based assessment tool used by clinicians to provide a baseline measurement of global function and can track change over time. It is used with a variety of diagnoses to predict and explaining patients' capabilities to function in various contexts. It uses common activities of daily living tasks. It organizes function into levels ranging from normal to profoundly disabled.


For more information about the Cognitive Assessment Program, please contact:

Rice Rehabilitation Center
311 SW 3rd St.
Willmar, MN 56201

Lynn Stier, Director

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