She added, “As my career developed, it was fun; he carried me like a rose in his buttonhole. “
Dr. Lezak worked in clinics and taught psychology at Portland State College (now University) and the University of Portland from 1949 until she began her 19-year tenure at VA Hospital in 1966. In 1985, she left Oregon Health. To Teach & Science University, where she was Professor of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry until 2005. She had a private practice for a long time and continued to visit patients until a few years ago.
As early as 1982, Dr. Lezak alert about the effects of head injuries in athletes; In 1999 and 2001, she was the author and researcher of studies that found cognitive impairments in amateur and professional football players caused by repeated use of the head to hit the ball. She and Erik Matser, co-author of both studies, warned of second impact syndrome, where a seemingly harmless blow to the head can lead to serious injury.
“I would say no one under the age of 18 should go on the trip,” she told the New York Times in 2001. There will be some leftovers and they won’t go away. “
She also served as an expert witness on a number of legal cases, including one in 2011 in which she concluded that Gary Haugen, a twice convicted murderer on death row in Oregon who was about to be executed, had a “delusional disorder causing him “incapable of execution.” Mr. Haugen said he had not given his permission to use the results of Dr. Lezak’s investigation as part of his defense lawyers’ efforts to prevent his execution.
Dr. Lezak leaves behind her daughters Anne and Miriam Lezak and nine grandchildren. Her son David died in 2014. Her husband died in 2006.
In her interview with Dr. Haaland reminded Dr. Lezak noted that prior to the publication of their textbook, patients with brain disorders and dysfunction were given a series of standard tests by technicians, who reported the results to a psychologist.
“God forbid the psychologist ever really saw the patient!” She said. “My book emphasized that you focus on the patient and do what is appropriate for the patient, not the test supplier.”