Moms for Education

Development & behavioral pediatric specialist or neuropsych testing for my 6 yo son?
January 12, 2013 at 11:31 PM

Hello, my son is 6 years old and we are suspecting maybe learning disability because he has begun to regress in school and having a hard time retaining things learned in school. Oh and I was thinking there might be some ADD as well because of his attention span. But I've always said boys at that age are normally hyperactive and energetic. Also he has developed in the last few months a thing he does with his eyes. He rolls them and it got worse over the Christmas break. We are thinking it's a tic of some sort. I understand its not uncommon for a child between 5-7 to get these then they can go away. Anyway my son (1st grade) attends one of the best private schools in our area. But lately I am not having so much faith in them. First they told me to have him tested for a learning disability and I agreed that was a good idea. By the way, when I say they I mean the schools Mental Health Consultant who has a PsyD degree. she's the one who suggests these things but the head of the school seems to go with whatever she says, always. So I called the school district to get the ball rolling on that on the testing. But then his school says going through the public school system isn't good because going through a private clinic which is thousands of dollars is best. But I still chose to do the public way because I know several who have had much success going this route. Then they said because of she rolling they said to forget about the testing for learning disability and have him tested by a neuropsychologist and said it would be $3,000. They are really pushing for me to go with their referral. But my sons pediatrician. Said he wants a developmental behavioral specialist to see my son who also specializes in tics. My sons dr is one of the chiefs of staff at the children's hospital near us and wonderful. My sons school psychologist told me going through insurance the doctors aren't good & children's hosp. doesn't have a neurologist! That's not true! Either she just lied or she doesn't know what she's talking about. I told my sons pediatrician and was so irritated with what she said and said of course we have neurologist. Anyway basically my sons school is pushing me to do it their way saying their people are best. But everyone knows children's hospital is wonderful. Also the specialist our pediatrician what's us to see is wonderful and has been recognized for his wonderful work with 20 years experience. Monday I plan to tell my sons school thank you but the info your psychologist consultant gave was inaccurate about the hospital. Also that I have chosen to go the route our pediatrician thinks we should go. They have become such a pain and its like they are getting a cut of the deal if I go to their person. Our pediatrician got us to see a behavioral specialist who has a 6 month waiting period next week. What are your thoughts on seeing a behavioral specialist vs. a neurologist first? Do you agree my sons school is just doing too much and looking out for their people? Anyone with experience with using a Peadiatric Developmental & Behavioral specialist and having their child get neuropsych testing done please give input and advice! Sorry for the long story but I'm lost, saddened and totally stressed. I just want to make sure I'm doing what's best for my son. Thank you!!


  • fraujones
    January 13, 2013 at 9:24 AM
    Has he had an MRI to look for neuroligical issues? I can understand wanting to go with your pedi's recommendation.
  • SamMom912
    January 14, 2013 at 5:32 PM

    I ve had LOTS of testing done on my 6 year old. :(
    Weve seen a developmental pediatrician, 2 pediatric neurologist, a behavioral therapist and psychiatrist and psychologist (1 in my sons school and 1 who is a specialist). My sons preschool noticed some behaviors when he was 3 and suggested a Dev.Ped. I wasn't happy with the Dev.Ped... so after some research, I found a ped. neurologist I liked, but it was a  month wait. In the interim I had a friend who knew a Ped Neuro. and got me in in 4 weeks... so I decided that 2 Dr's ( one may give 2nd opinion to first). After getting the DX for my son of ASD, I found a behavioral therapist that I worked with for about a year, was unhappy with her directions so I went and found the psychiatrist who specialises in Aspergers. (my sons ultimate DX) and have worked hand in hand with my sons school psychologist to get him the support he currently needs at school. I will say I have spent a small fortune on my son.. but he is my world and I want what is best for him and I wont settle for an answer that doesn't feel right or a course of action that I dont agree with.

    Since he is YOUR son, I have the UTMOST faith in YOUR decision. If you like your pediatrician and trust him/her, then by all means go see the behavioral specialist. If you're unhappy with whatever that Dr says/ suggests then perhaps after you can follow up (only if necessary) with the path that the school is suggesting. I dont know if I'd mention anything was inaccurate to the school; that seems unnecessarily confrontational; I may just tell the school that you LOVE your pediatrician and want to follow their suggestion first. Perhaps the school has NOT had much luck with other Dr's, and have been satisfied with the results that these Dr's they are suggesting. I DO think they have your sons best interest in mind, (I do tend to be a bit Pollyanna that way!)  but ultimately, you know your son best...and it sounds to me like you like your pediatricians route as a first pass.
    remember, kids are always changing; what sounds good for today; may not sound good for 3 months from now... or 6... you know what I mean?

  • SamMom912
    January 14, 2013 at 5:33 PM

    btw, my guy is in first grade now too! :)

  • Kris_PBG
    January 19, 2013 at 8:25 AM
    I think the school sounds very over involved and out of line.

    I would not answer to them. I would say you are working with your pediatrician and as soon as you have some results to share you will let them know so you can schedule a meeting.
  • maxswolfsuit
    January 19, 2013 at 9:13 AM

    I would go with the pediatricians recommendation, he seems more reliable than the school psychologist. It does sound like the school has some ulterior motive for telling you what they are. It's so unprofessional of them to pressure you that way. 

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