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Functional Neurological Disorder: A Healthcare Professional’s Guide

Understand the history, symptoms, and management of FND to communicate more effectively and sensitively with your patients.

1,464 enrolled on this course

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Functional Neurological Disorder: A Healthcare Professional’s Guide

1,464 enrolled on this course

  • 3 weeks

  • 3 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Intermediate level

Find out more about how to join this course

Learn from experts on functional neurological disorder

Specialist understanding of functional neurological disorder (FND) has improved rapidly in recent years. Yet research shows that there is still a worrying lack of awareness of the condition among healthcare professionals more broadly.

On this three-week course taught by world-leading experts at St George’s, University of London, you’ll gain in-depth insights into all aspects of the condition. You’ll learn from the lived experience of FND sufferers, and explore the impact that poor patient communication has had on their lives.

Learn about FND symptoms and diagnosis

After an introduction to the history and pathophysiology of FND, you’ll delve further into the challenges around diagnosis.

You’ll learn about functional neurological signs and symptoms, and how you can make a diagnosis of FND.

Explore strategies for managing FND

Once a patient is diagnosed with FND, a range of treatments are available to help manage and improve the condition.

You’ll explore different treatments for FND, including psychological therapy, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy.

Develop effective and sensitive patient communication

In the third and final week of the course, you’ll apply your knowledge to a clinical scenario, focusing on the issue of language choice. Hearing from a real-life sufferer of FND, you’ll understand the damage that poor communication by healthcare professionals can do to a patient’s condition.

By the end of the course, you’ll have a comprehensive understanding of FND and a clear sense of how best to inform and advise patients about their condition.


  • Week 1

    Understanding FND

    • Introduction to Functional Neurological Disorder

      Welcome to this course on Functional Neurological Disorder. During this section, we will be exploring how to define FND, including the importance of language and some historical context.

    • Epidemiology and risk factors

      How common is FND? And which patients are most at risk of developing functional symptoms? Here we will look at the prevalence and major risk factors associated with developing FND.

    • Underlying mechanisms

      Here we look at current neuroscientific theories underlying the development of functional neurological symptoms

    • Summary of the week

      We cover what we have learnt this week and what we can look forward to in the coming week

  • Week 2

    FND diagnosis and management

    • Welcome to week 2

      Introduction to the topics and areas covered this week

    • Presentation and diagnosis

      We cover what symptoms and diagnosis steps are taken with patients with FND

    • Types of FND management

      Management of FND is tailored to the individual patient, depending on their clinical presentation and risk factors. Here we explore some of the different management modalities in more details.

    • Summary of the week

      A summary of the topics and areas covered this week

  • Week 3

    Communication skills in practice

    • Welcome to Week 3

      Welcome to the final week of the course

    • Layla's story: Presentation to the Emergency Department

      In this section of the course, we will meet Layla, a woman presenting to the Emergency Department, with symptoms concerning for a possible stroke.

    • Layla's story: Seizures on the ward

      On the stroke unit, Layla's symptoms evolve into a new presentation.

    • Take home messages

      Summary of the course

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explain what Functional Neurological Disorder (FND) is using lay language
  • Describe the proposed underlying pathophysiology of Functional Neurological Disorder (FND)
  • Identify any biological, psychological and social risk factors in patients with functional neurological symptoms
  • Identify positive diagnostic markers from the history and examination that are suggestive of Functional Neurological Disorder (FND)
  • Reflect on the importance of language choices when communicating with patients about Functional Neurological Disorder (FND)
  • Summarise the different management strategies that can be used to treat Functional Neurological Disorder (FND)
  • Practice answering patient questions about Functional Neurological Disorder (FND), including explaining the diagnosis, possible risk factors and triggers, investigations and management

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for professionals across the healthcare sector (including medical, mental health and allied health professionals), who want to learn more about functional neurological disorder and its diagnosis.

Who will you learn with?

Who developed the course?

St George's, University of London

St George’s is the UK’s only university dedicated to medical and health sciences education, training and research.

Ways to learn

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Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Buy this course

$109/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Subscribe & save

$349.99 for one year

Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 13 Aug 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

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