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Functional Neurological Disorder: A Healthcare Professional’s Guide

St George's, University of London via FutureLearn


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.

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.


  • Understanding FND
    • Introduction to Functional Neurological Disorder
    • Epidemiology and risk factors
    • Underlying mechanisms
    • Summary of the week
  • FND diagnosis and management
    • Welcome to week 2
    • Presentation and diagnosis
    • Types of FND management
    • Summary of the week
  • Communication skills in practice
    • Welcome to Week 3
    • Layla's story: Presentation to the Emergency Department
    • Layla's story: Seizures on the ward
    • Take home messages

Taught by

Ania Crawshaw


4.9 rating at FutureLearn based on 17 ratings

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