messy. crazy. amazing. joyful.

We're not all officially ADHD. Dad's unofficial. Our ten-year-old twins have ADHD. Our seven-year old wants to have it because everyone is always talking about it. Our three year old has ADHD--just because she's three. And me, Mom, I think it's contagious. Who can remain untouched in a house where shoes seem to be lost every morning, instructions are routinely thrown aside, and fights erupt over which continent capybaras come from?

Friday, May 7, 2010

First Impressions after Neuropsychological Testing

The Love/Hate Twins

Back from our multiple-day neuropsychological testing with Dr. Adam Schwebach. Though we will not receive all the written results, diagnoses, and advice for another week, I can say at this point that I am glad we did it. The kids felt comfortable with “Adam” and thought the testing activities were “fun.” After each day’s testing, Dr. Schwebach talked to me about his thoughts and preliminary findings and answered any questions (as always, quite a few) that I had.
He thinks that both Luke and Isabelle do have ADHD. He didn’t feel that either of them have Asperger’s. While Izzy does have some symptoms of depression and anxiety, he feels this is due to the stress caused by her ADHD. If we can cope better with the ADHD, these symptoms may improve. He was also concerned about her reversals in writing. She often writes letters (not entire words) in reverse, especially “s” and “g.” We may have her assessed for motor skill development. He thinks that she is more intelligent than her schoolwork shows because ADHD hinders her problem solving and emotional responses. She does fine academically, but it would be nice if she enjoyed school more and experienced less frustration.
 On the other hand, Luke may have some anxiety that should be addressed separately. This was a surprise to me since I worried more that Izzy had anxiety issues. Luke understands social interactions but cannot control his emotional reactions. He knows that what he is doing is unusual or that he is overreacting, but he cannot stop doing it. Though both kids are using Intuniv, Dr. Schwebach said he would like to try them on stimulants in addition. (Both grandmothers are groaning here.) The Intuniv is a norepinephrine drug, and he feels they may benefit from a drug that stimulates their dopamine production. We did tell him about our Vyvanse nightmares, so we will try other drugs, maybe Concerta, Adderall, etc.
I’m looking forward to getting the results. Dr. Schwebach will include suggestions on behavioral therapies to implement at home and at school and how to work with the school to best help the kids. That sounded great to me. I can think of some teachers that could use a little ADHD education…
Dr. Schwebach also gave me the book, “Raising Resilient Children” by Robert Brooks and Sam Goldstein. I will give it a read and see what I think. (Aren’t I skeptical even though we had a good experience?) Dr. Schwebach is an associate of Sam Goldstein, who is quite a well known psychiatrist, speaker, and writer. ADHD is one of his special interests. He has a web site with some good resource links. If you are interested check out Why didn’t we go to Dr. Goldstein? I didn’t want to wait six months! And I think Dr. Schwebach was good. Sometimes the “famous” people are too busy writing books, giving speeches, and teaching at universities anyway right? So there are my first impressions. I will write more when I get our results.


  1. My son has ADHD and has had issues with letter & number reversals... we had him assessed and began doing some OT with him. Not only has his handwriting improved tremendously, but we are seeing hardly any reversals anymore. They taught him some tricks to help remember how the letters go and worked on fine motor skill of the hands & strengthening. Best of luck to you!

  2. Thanks Becky. I think OT might be really good for my daughter. We'll see what they say.

  3. You are such an amazing mother, and I think Luke and Izzy are amazing children.