Cognitive Assessment at Carolina Healthspan Institute

When I saw a local institute had participated in a study that showed reversal of cognitive decline, I knew I had to visit.

The study, published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease & Parkinsonism, showed reversal of cognitive decline in 100 patients by different physicans around the world following a similar protocol.

Dr. Dale Bredesen, the lead author of the paper, has written a book called The End of Alzheimer's in which he discusses this protocol – the first of it's kind to shown to prevent and reverse cognitive decline.

Although I'm relatively young and haven't noticed any obvious signs of cognitive issues I wanted to get myself tested.

Before the appointment

Carolina HealthSpan Institute is a functional medicine practice founded in Charlotte, NC in 2004. This practice was part of the research in the study that showed reversal of cognitive decline.

The institute has put together their own program called the ReConnect Program, which is based off the framework and fundamentals of the Bredesen Protocol with variations based clinical experience.

A ReConnect risk assessment of cognitive decline and Alzheimer's disease cost roughly $1000.

Online forms

First, there were five detailed questionnaries that were sent out to be completed. These included:

  • Biotoxin symptoms
  • Lifestyle assessment
  • Alzheimer's Disease symptoms
  • General medical symptoms
  • Patient goals

Blood work

Next was blood work. In total there were 17 different tests checking important markers for heart disease, hormones, thyroid, vitamins, prostate cancer, blood, liver, kidney, and electrolytes. This was all taken in one lab appointment that took less than half an hour.

The costs below were taken from using LabCorp. If purchased individually they would be roughly $800, but doctor's offices get steep discounts.

During the appointment

Lasted approximately 2 hours

  • Verbal test – What were my goals, basic IQ test, reasoning.
  • Visual Contrast Test (VCS test) – Tests for exposure to biotoxins. No distance used.
  • CNS Vital Signs – Main part of exam. Test speed, memory, focus, and attention. Some parts reminded me of an IQ test I took long ago.
  • Body weight, fat, and composition – Machine that tested these.
  • Nervous system exam with doctor – I've had these before due to neurological issues. Tests obvious signs of disease, reflexes, walking, eye movement.

Follow-up with doctor

Dr. Kathleen Russo, MD

Final thoughts

First time seeing a functional medicine doctor

Carolina Healthspan Institute