Cognitive and Memory Disorders

Any adult experiencing memory difficulties may be eligible for care. University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics provides evaluation and treatment for Alzheimer's disease and other age-related neurological conditions that affect memory. An integrated multidisciplinary approach is provided by experts in cognitive rehabilitation, geriatric nursing, neuroimaging, neurology, and neuropsychology.

Behavioral neurologists provide neurological examinations, coordinate and interpret laboratory tests, and oversee pharmacological treatment. All patients are provided with comprehensive neuropsychology evaluations of memory and other cognitive abilities, behavior, and emotion. These evaluations are an important component of the diagnostic process and allow quantified evaluation of functional abilities.


UI Hospitals & Clinics is equipped with state-of-the-art imaging facilities for non-invasive viewing of the brain. These tools used in diagnosis and research provide detailed pictures of brain structure and function while maintaining patient comfort and safety.

Behavioral Management

Experts in neuropsychological rehabilitation, geriatric nursing, and rehabilitation counseling provide patients and their families with guidance in managing the cognitive, emotional, and behavioral changes associated with aging and dementia.

Among the Conditions Treated are:

  • Alzheimer's disease 
  • Corticobasal degeneration
  • Dementia associated with Parkinsonism
  • Dementia in persons with intellectual disability
  • Fronto-temporal lobar degeneration
  • Lewy body disease
  • Memory impairment secondary to sleep disorders
  • Mild cognitive impairment 
  • Pick's disease
  • Pre-senile dementia
  • Primary progressive aphasia
  • Traumatic brain injury 
  • Vascular (stroke-related) dementia

Participating in Research

We maintain a registry for research studies involving memory disorders and other cognitive changes that occur with aging. The purpose is to maintain a current listing of older persons who may be willing to participate in studies designed to learn more about age-related memory disorders.

Investigators maintain an active program of research aimed at improving driving safety in persons with neurological impairments. One purpose of the service is to investigate new pharmacological and behavioral interventions for persons with memory disorders. There may be one or more ongoing clinical trials of experimental treatments at any time. For more information, please see our About Your Neurology Visit guide.

We help with and do clinical studies in healthy older adults and adults with cognitive difficulties, such as Alzheimer's. Some studies will be observing you or reviewing an MRI of your brain. Other studies can have drug treatments or other interventions. To learn more about these studies, please call or email Karen Ekstam-Smith at 1-319-353-5158 or

If you are interested in finding out more about the Department of Neurology, our research and educational programs, news and events, or how you can give by donating, please visit our academic and departmental website.

Care Team