View Full Version : University of Penn Adult ADHD Center?

12-13-10, 01:30 AM
Anyone have any experience with initial diagnosis using the U of P Center? I have an appointment for the initial 10 minute phone interview this week. They said after the initial phone interview, you go to them for a 4-5 hour evaluation with a couple hours of "standardized testing" and a couple of hours of asking questions about your life history. There's a 7 week wait to get into this evaluation. A week later they give you the results and reccommended treatment. Total cost is $1,200, which you have to pay out of pocket and then submit to your insurance company for reimbursement, if they cover it at all. Don't know whether I should go here or go to my doctor. The doctors stahh said they refer patients to a neurologist for ADHD.
Thanks for any input.

12-13-10, 11:28 AM
Seconded! I'm thinking of doing this too, but I haven't the money to pay out of pocket, and am getting a short eval from a psychologist this Thursday :(

12-13-10, 02:57 PM
I think these evaluations are rather pointless. A psychiatrist, neuropsychiatrist, neurologist, psychologist, even a skilled therapist can all properly diagnose ADHD. I'm not sure what benefit standardized tests confer. You're going in for a reason, likely being that you already suspect you have the disorder. Your hunch is likely right, for the sole reason that few other issues can cause the same constellation of symptoms. Sometimes medical conditions are partially responsible, but that's rare. Bipolar disorder is the only other mental condition that causes similar symptoms, and you would notice the symptoms only during mood episodes.

Personally, I was diagnosed by my psychiatrist and psychologist, who both gave me some questionnaires and asked about my life history. It became abundantly clear that I have ADHD, and have for my whole life.

Treatment is the same, no matter what subtype and severity of ADHD you have, so I really don't understand the purpose in spending $1,200 for such an evaluation.

Actually, I was the one who brought up ADHD in the first place--as I suspect many on this forum did (it's a self-selected group), because I read about it on the Internet, among other disorders, bought some books, and identified immediately with the anecdotes and symptoms described. The professionals' opinion and diagnosis were merely the final nail in the coffin.

12-13-10, 05:53 PM
Thanks for the replies. I made an appointment with my PCP for tomorrow. He will refer me to a neurologist. Hopefully the neurologist with have a lot of experience in Adult ADHD. Once officially diagnosed, my insurance - Horizon BC and BS HMO which uses Magellan to manage mental heath issues - requires that my treatment be done using a psychiatrist or psychologist in network. We'll see what happens.

insight needed
12-13-10, 11:05 PM
A family member went to this diagnostic clinic at the U. of PA. He actually had been diagnosed by a pediatrician when he was in school. He went hoping for more insight into himself, and to some extent he received that; the standardized testing sort of validated why some things are very hard for him academically, despite being quite intelligent. So far as I have been able to determine, there was no written report provided pertaining to the testing, although perhaps one is available for an additional cost. Maybe this is a good option if there are no other knowledgeable practitioners available, but it was awfully expensive for what was gained. Follow-up medication appointments at Penn are also quite expensive (and not included in the initial evaluation).