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I saw that neuropsychiatry & behavioral neurology are one big subspecialty that merged together and is accredited by the United counsel for neurologic subspecialties.

It stated that practitioners in the subspecialty are the same and do the same thing but they just may have come from different primary training pathways to get there (either neurology or psychiatry). I read that since it's one specialty however that the titles are interchangeable and that practitioners can refer to themselves as either a behavioral neurologist or Neuropsychiatrist regardless of their original training pathway.

How can they be the same if one person might have come from neurology and another from psychiatry?

Aside from possibly different training pathways, is there a difference in scope of practice and what each is able to do?
 
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splik

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eh so UCNS has lumped them together but they are different. This is actually somewhat misleading because they aren't the same thing. some fellowships focus on behavioral neurology (which focuses on dementia and neurobehavioral symptoms related to specific brain lesions). Neuropsychiatry is much broader and also includes functional neurological symptoms and psychiatric manifestations of neurological disease. It is a fairly academic specialty. They are only "the same" insofar as a good neuropsychiatrist should be able to evaluate patients with dementias just as a neurologist does (compared with say the way that a geriatric psychiatrist evaluates dementia without doing a neurological examination and having a more simplistic notion of the different forms of dementias) and a good behavioral neurologist should feel comfortable with psychiatric symptoms. a neuropsychiatrist who does not have dual neurology training is not going to be treating other neurological disorders outside the cognitive neurological disorders. a behavioral neurologist is not going to be seeing neurotic patients without neurological symptoms or treat patients with schizophrenia for example.

I guess another way to think of it, is there a number of subspecialties that are interdiscipinary (for example sleep medicine, pain medicine, palliative medicine etc). You can come from many different backgrounds but within your interdisciplinary subspecialty you should have a the same core knowledge of sleep medicine/pain etc etc regardless of what your original specialty training is.
 
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slappy

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See this paper for why the training is combined, and why the disciplines are in fact, extremely similar: http://neuro.psychiatryonline.org/doi/pdf/10.1176/jnp.2009.21.3.335

I call myself a neuropsychiatrist not because I had psychiatry training before my BN+NP fellowship but because I like the conciseness of the word. My colleagues vary in what they call themselves, and that has little correlation with their residency training. Their work also spans the entire gamut of what BNNPs do. The only place where I still see the artificial divide in the designation is at Brigham and Women's, as they have two distinct but combined (I know it's confusing) departments and training programs. Also, while I do a lot of research in cognitive neuroscience (not dementia), there are plenty of people in the field who primarily do clinical work. So while all specialties are "academic," and this one a little more so, it is a myth that all practitioners in the field only do research and little else.

It's a fabulous field, one that fascinates me every day, whether I'm doing clinical work or research. It's an avenue for exploring mostly uncharted territories in brain disorders, again both in clinical practice and in research. Good luck with your choices.
 
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Healthinfo104

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eh so UCNS has lumped them together but they are different. This is actually somewhat misleading because they aren't the same thing. some fellowships focus on behavioral neurology (which focuses on dementia and neurobehavioral symptoms related to specific brain lesions). Neuropsychiatry is much broader and also includes functional neurological symptoms and psychiatric manifestations of neurological disease. It is a fairly academic specialty. They are only "the same" insofar as a good neuropsychiatrist should be able to evaluate patients with dementias just as a neurologist does (compared with say the way that a geriatric psychiatrist evaluates dementia without doing a neurological examination and having a more simplistic notion of the different forms of dementias) and a good behavioral neurologist should feel comfortable with psychiatric symptoms. a neuropsychiatrist who does not have dual neurology training is not going to be treating other neurological disorders outside the cognitive neurological disorders. a behavioral neurologist is not going to be seeing neurotic patients without neurological symptoms or treat patients with schizophrenia for example.

I guess another way to think of it, is there a number of subspecialties that are interdiscipinary (for example sleep medicine, pain medicine, palliative medicine etc). You can come from many different backgrounds but within your interdisciplinary subspecialty you should have a the same core knowledge of sleep medicine/pain etc etc regardless of what your original specialty training is.
Thank you for taking the time to explain! It then stated that behavioral neurologists with the psychiatric training that they receive in these fellowships are able to handle and treat primary psychiatric disorders or symptoms that present to them... is that true?
 
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