Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

The Ken & Ruth Davee Department of Neurology

Division Chief's Message

Welcome to the Behavioral Neurology Division. Our mission is to serve patients with neurological disorders that impair behavior and cognition. Collaboration with the Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer’s Disease Center (CNADC) of the Feinberg School of Medicine gives us access to a multidisciplinary team of clinicians and scientists. 

Our specialty encompasses behavioral and cognitive impairments of neurological origin, including those that arise from stroke, epilepsy, neoplasm, head injury and many other conditions. In practice, most of the patients we serve have cerebrovascular or neurodegenerative diseases causing dementia.

The ability to distinguish age-related memory changes from those caused by Alzheimer’s disease, the identification of reversible cognitive impairments, and the differential diagnosis of dementias have become increasingly more sophisticated. We have learned that dementias can start as early as the 5th decade of life, that some dementias impair language and behavior rather than memory, and that there are many causes of dementia other than Alzheimer’s disease.

New causative and risk genes are being discovered at an accelerating pace; novel molecular biomarkers are enhancing diagnostic accuracy; clinical trials are proliferating; and new non-pharmacologic interventions are being designed. Through these developments, we are entering a stage of personalized medicine, where each patient can receive care that fits the clinical syndrome as well as the underlying disease process.

My colleagues and I look forward to interacting with you in areas of patient care and also hope to see you at our multiple didactic programs.  

M Marsel Mesulam, MD

M Marsel Mesulam, MD
Chief, Division of Cognitive Neurology