New Patients

Questions about becoming a new patient?

New patients and prospective patients have questions. At Carolina Brain Center, we offer a free 15-minute initial phone consultation to answer your questions. In order to best answer these questions, we have developed a consultation request form for you to fill out. Having key pieces of information about why you are contacting the office helps make the most out of the time. Dr. Dane will personally call you to discuss your health goals and to answer your questions about her office. Calls are made as her schedule allows and, typically, in the mornings between 8:00AM and 9:30AM.

My exams are the most important thing I do!

Further, it goes way beyond running through a physical examination. It is my specialized training that enables me to:

Do a meaningful exam
Interpret the data ascertained during the exam
Correlate exam, lab, and subjective complaints
Diagnose
Make appropriate referrals
Order differential diagnostic labs, imagining, and/or other special tests
Develop a course of treatment

The main objective of a neurological exam is twofold:

To identify an abnormality in the nervous system.
To differentiate peripheral from central nervous system lesions.

The basic components of the physical neurological exam:

I. General Appearance

Habitus
Posture
Vital Signs
Motor Activity

II. Mini Mental Status

Memory
Speech

III. Cranial Nerves I-XII

All but CN I & II exit the brainstem. Examining the cranial nerves is an excellent way to evaluate the functionality of the brainstem.

IV. Motor System

Tone
Strength
Atrophy

V. Sensory System

Vibration
Joint Position
Pin Prick
Temperature
Light touch
Higher sensory function

VI. Reflexes

Deep tendon reflexes
Primitive reflexes
Pathological reflexes

VII. Cerebellar

Coordination
Gait
Balance

Videonystagmography:

VNG or videonystagmography. This 20 minute test is a superior objective diagnostic tool. We run VNGs throughout the course of treatment so that we KNOW that we KNOW we are making the changes we want to make.

Exams run anywhere from 1 to 2 hours depending upon the age and functional ability of the patient. After the exam is completed and reviewed and other information (labs etc.) has been collected and subsequently reviewed, the patient is scheduled for a “Report of Findings.” During the ROF, I go over in detail what the problem is so that the patient understands exactly what is going on and what needs to happen by way of treatment.

I hope you have found this helpful!

Lab testing is often used to understand how any imbalances in your body could be contributing to your condition and/or symptoms.

These tests may include:

Mindful DNA
A comprehensive blood panel
An antibody panel that assesses which parts of the brain or body the immune system is attacking and, thus, causing symptoms
A gluten sensitivity panel (people can react to many different portions of gluten, the protein in wheat linked in the research to numerous neurological conditions)
An expanded gluten cross-reactivity and sensitivity panel, which assesses the foods to which your body reacts as if they were gluten or to which your immune system has become sensitized
Adrenal salivary panels to assess how stress plays a role in your condition
DNAConnexions Lyme panel
Hormone panels, and more.

Neurological Examination

The doctors conduct a bedside neurological examination during a patient’s initial visit.

Videonystagmography (VNG)

Videonystagmography (VNG) testing is a series of tests used to assess balance problems, dizziness, and other issues associated with the vestibular system by evaluating how the eyes respond to visual stimulation. The tests involve the patient wearing a set of infrared goggles that record and trace eye movements as the eyes follow moving targets. Unlike other tests that measure movements based on the muscles surrounding the eyes, VNG testing directly tracks eye movements, thus making it to be considered the standard for testing vestibular function.

Computerized Posturography (CAPS)

Computerized Posturography is a clinical assessment technique that is used to evaluate a person’s control of posture and balance, which involves sensory, motor, and central nervous system processes. The patient stands on a horizontal platform that both challenges and measures the patient’s ability to maintain balance. By combining the measurements from CAPS with those from the VNG testing, a more complete picture is given, which helps the doctor identify the affected areas of the brain.

Saccadometry

The Saccadometer is a non-invasive diagnostic tool that performs evaluations of fast eye movements (saccades). Nearly every level of the brain is involved in generating saccades.  Neurological and physiological disorders can affect saccades, specifically saccadic latency and saccadic velocity. The Saccodometer provides quantitative analysis of latency and velocity profiles in order to give the doctor another glimpse into how well specific parts of the brain are working.

Changing the brain (neuroplasticity) requires an appropriate intensity and frequency of treatment.

Most of our patients begin treatment with an Intensive Week. During an Intensive, a patient receives 3 hours/day of treatment over a 4-hour period. Outcome assessments are performed throughout the week to ensure each patient is receiving the best treatment.

Upon completion of an Intensive period, patients leave with therapies to do at home, up to several times a day, and are asked to return in two weeks for a follow-up appointment to assess progress and to decide upon frequency of office visits. The goal is to have patients do as much therapy as possible at home, which is far more cost effective and empowering. For our pediatric patients, parent participation during the Intensive week and at home is key to ensure that all home therapies are done confidently and correctly.

In order for home therapy to be effective, patients will be expected to complete their given therapies as assigned. Patients who neglect to complete their therapies at home and in a consistent manner will not create permanent change.

In addition, some patients may be asked to make changes to their diet based on the results of their labs and to support their recovery. Supplements may be recommended in order to improve brain and adrenal function or to restore the digestive tract.

Carolina Brain Center is an elite specialty practice, serving patients with neurological injury, disease and symptoms. In order to provide the best possible service, the number of patients admitted to the practice is limited.

You matter! Every patient is examined and treated by our doctors personally. The one-to-one doctor-patient interaction enables our results to stand above the rest.

Our whole body approach is another defining characteristic of the practice. Digging deeper into the chemical environment of your body is often key to obtaining a healthier nervous system.

Due to the constraints of working as a provider for an insurance company, we have elected not to participate in any insurance programs. There is no reimbursement available for treatments and services. Routine labs and diagnostic imaging are typically covered by insurance. Specialty labs are typically not covered but give great clinical insight, which helps target treatment.

When it comes to your health, you get what you pay for. If standard, insurance-covered care is not working for you, then you need to decide whether the health of your brain and body is worth going the extra mile.

We accept all major credit cards, including American Express, and have CareCredit as a third-party finance option.

Steps to becoming a patient at Carolina Brain Center:

  1. Fill out a consultation request form to speak with Dr. Dane
  2. She will call you to discuss whether or not you are a good candidate for the practice.
  3. Fill out new patient paperwork within 72 hours of receipt.

FAQs

What is Functional Neurology?

Functional neurology (or chiropractic neurology) is an emerging health care discipline that, in essence, is the clinical evaluation and treatment method for the central and peripheral nervous system. Functional neurology uses brain function, measured through non-invasive diagnostic tools in office as well as through bedside examination, to determine how a patient’s condition is affected neurologically. Based on these findings, functional neurologists can begin to rehabilitate specific parts of the brain through environmental stimuli (e.g., visual, auditory, and vestibular therapies).

What is a Functional Neurology Exam like?

Examinations run 1-2 hrs depending upon the age and functional ability of the patient. The exam includes the following: review of history, observation, neurological examination, and diagnostics (videonystagmography, computerized posturography, and saccadometry). After the examination, Dr. Dane or Dr. Brindisi will take time to explain the diagnostic findings as well as to answer any questions you may have.

What are the Rehabilitation Exercises like?

Rehabilitation exercises vary from patient to patient as they are customized to the patient based on the exam findings and ongoing outcome assessments during treatment. They can include head and eye exercises, vestibular training, balance training, cognitive training, dual tasking, and core stability training.

How soon can I expect to see improvement?

It is not uncommon for patients to experience some improvement after one day of treatment. However, lasting change takes time, especially for patients with chronic and complex conditions. Typically, these patients experience improvement within three to six months of therapy.

Why should every chiropractic patient have a functional neurological exam?

Chiropractic manipulation has an effect on the brain.  A neurological exam will reveal what adjustments could help or hinder the compromised area of the brain and your symptoms.

How can functional neurology reduce my risk of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, or other brain diseases?

People who think they have healthy brains may be surprised to discover that their brain function is actually compromised in some way. By discovering how their brains are compromised before they begin showing obvious symptoms and by working to improve the compromised areas of the brain, people can reduce their risk of later developing advanced brain disorders (e.g., Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, memory loss, depression, loss of balance). In addition, good brain health can help prevent breakdowns in bodily  functions that can result in poor bladder control, poor digestion, high blood pressure, dry eyes, erectile dysfunction, and more.