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Psychiatry & Psychology--General/Daughter and change in personalilty


QUESTION: History: my daughter had head injury at school which whilst in itself was minor, immediately resulted in change of speech and mobility.MRI and CAT scan showed no bleeds on brain.
After 4 months in hospital my daughter is now thought to have mental health issues.(She was diagnosed with Aspergers, OCD, anxiety and conversion disorder)
Previous to the accident she showed none of these symptoms.
As we stand now, at times of stress, she reverts to a childlike state with no sense of humour and no inhibitions(she can be quite brutal in her actions). She reverts to about the age of a 4 year old.
In this state she cannot spell and I become mommy rather than mom(she is 14)
She was initially placed on medication but on initial recovery this hindered her thought processes so she was taken off this.
Could you offer advice on what course of action I could take next as I feel that this is not really being addressed to my satisfaction and I'm not sure what she needs?

ANSWER: Samantha

I am very sorry to hear about your daughter, but I also am not sure I understand your situation. This is because  you said your daughter had a minor head injury, but you also said she was in the hospital for four months, which sounds like her injury was quite serious.

Sorting out what is going on with your daughter can only be accomplished with the help of a specialist called a Pediatric Neurologist.  This type of doctor is specially trained to diagnose and treat children with brain and nervous system problems.  This doctor can properly evaluate her and then may recommend other types of medicines or treatments, but she should be thoroughly evaluated first.


Dr. Elmore

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: The injury she had was a bang to the cerebelum. She immediately started to speak funny and walked like she was drunk.

Over a week her walking got worse to the point where she was in a wheelchair.

She was transferred to childrens hospital where they could evaluate her further.
After further test they believed that whilst the head injury may have been a trigger, it was not the reason for these symptoms.

I had originally asked for another scan on her brain but this was refused.

I believe that whilst in this hospital she was seen by a neurologist.

I am struggling to see how such an injury could trigger such a change in personality?


This problem has to do with the physical effects of a, head trauma in children, which are highly varied and often,  as in your daughter's case, more severe in their effects, than one would predict given the less severity of the injury itself.

An ordinary neurologist is apt to comment as  you have stated only on the severity of the injury without the extensive follow-up that is apparently needed.  A pediatric neurologist would be the specialist to evaluate no only the injury but the terrible effect that it has produced and may, after evaluating your daughter recommend follow up MRI and psychological testing to get to the bottom and to develop a treatment plan to make her better.

Try to find a hospital that has a unit for the treatment of head injuries in children.  There are more and better ones like this nowadays because of the growing concern for the impact of head injury on children participating in sports.  It does not matter if your daughter's injury did not occur while participating in sports because the team in such hospital units would be expert in the diagnoses and treatments your daughter most likely requires.


Dr. Elmore  

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Andrew M. Elmore, Ph.D.


I can answer questions about: Stress. Headaches. Stress-related Disorders. Anxiety/Panic Disorder. Depression. Psychopathology. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Personal Problem Solving. Life in General. Relationships: Love, Friendship, Business Partner, Coworker, Family,Child/Parent. What makes us tick. The use of psycho-pharmacological agents in combination with psychological treatment. How to deal with evil people in your life. How to improve your outlook under duress. How to control stress. How to control mood. How to control headaches. I cannot answer: Questions about Eating Disorders. Questions about computers.


30 years in private practice as a psychologist in Manhattan. Dealing with people from almost every conceivable ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds, and as many character types as exist in this country. Dealing with patients from 8 years old to 90 years old. Pioneer in biofeedback and the treatment of stress-related disorders. Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine since 1982. Treatment of stress-related, anxiety and depressive disorders with biofeedback and cognitive behavioral therapy. Developed personal problem solving, an extremely precise form of psychotherapy. Relationship therapy for couples, families, parent/child issues, business partners, coworkers, employers, and dealing with psychopathic individuals in your life.

American Psychological Association. Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback. Biofeedback Certification Institute of America. New York Academy of Sciences.

The journal, Psychophysiology. The book, Expanding Dimensions of Consciousness. The journal, Headache. The journal, Biofeedback and Self-Regulation. The journal Psychiatry Digest. The book, The TMJ Book. The book, Dental Phobia. The network, CNN. Parade Magazine. The newspaper, Newsday. The Manhattan TV station, WCBS. The national news program, The CBS Evening News. The newspaper, The New York Post. The national TV program, The Phil Donohue Show. The magazine, The New Yorker. The magazine, Glamor. The magazine, Redbook. The magazine, Health. The magazine, Bottom Line Personal. Web MD. The website, Healthology. The magazine, Newsweek.

Ph.D. SUNY at Stony Brook, 1979. B.A., magna cum laude with Honors in Psychology, Illinois Wesleyan University, 1974.

Awards and Honors
Who’s Who in Medicine and Healthcare, First, Second and Third Editions, 1997-2000. Appointed to the Training Faculty of the Biofeedback Certification Institute of America (BCIA), 1993. Senior Fellow BCIA. New York Academy of Sciences, 1987. Who’s Who in the East, 1983-present. Who’s Who in Frontier Science and Technology, First Edition. Citation Paper Author. Eleventh Annual Meeting of the Biofeedback Society of America, Colorado Springs, Colorado, 1980. Biofeedback Society of America Scholar, 1979. Co-author, USVA Grant, “Variables Affecting the Experience of Pain in Migraine,” USVA Medical Center, Northport, New York, 1977-1979. Biomedical Research Fellow, Department of Biomedical Engineering, SUNY at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, New York, 1978. NIMH Predoctoral Fellowship, 1976. BA, Magna cum laude, with Honors in Psychology, 1974. Danforth Fellowship Nominee, Illinois Wesleyan University, Bloomington, Illinois, 1973.

Past/Present Clients
Most of my clients are my private patients. However I have provided many seminars, lectures and workshops for: Columbia University. The Mount Sinai School of Medicine. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Museum of Natural History. The UJA Federation. The university, CW Post. The College of New Rochelle. Equinox Fitness. Travelers Insurance. AutoOne Insurance. Chubb Insurance. Metropolitan Life. Allstate Insurance. State Farm Insurance. Encompass Insurance. The public relations firm, Porter Novelli. The investment firm, Capital Re:. The Estee Lauder corporation. The law firm of Irwin Abrams. The National Insurance Crime Bureau. GEICO Insruance. Beth Israel Hospital.

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