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Resolution of post-traumatic amnesia

thesis
posted on 28.03.2022, 21:49 by Anne Pfaff
After suffering a severe brain injury a loss of consciousness usually ensues. This period of coma is followed by a period of amnesia, confusion and disorientation and this stage is referred to as post-traumatic amnesia (PTA). Clinical observations have found that simple recognition memory returns before temporal orientation in the majority of severely head-injured patients and this raised the question of whether significant cognitive changes accompanied this pattern of resolution. -- Subjects were tested on four occasions on a reaction time task and a memory test. It was found that recognition memory, as measured by the ability to consistently recall the 3 pictures of the PTA scale, resolved before temporal orientation. This return of simple recognition memory co-incided with a dramatic improvement in attention, as measured by simple reaction times. For subjects with a PTA of more than 8 weeks improvement in speed plateaud once they emerged from PTA whereas memory continued to show improvement after emergence from PTA. -- These results are important clinically. It has been thought that patients cannot benefit from therapy while they are in PTA. The finding that attention improves dramatically once recognition memory returns means that therapy which depends on procedural memory could begin at this time. In cases where PTA cannot be measured effectively with the use of a PTA scale, reaction times could be monitored and when a plateau was reached one could be reasonably confident that PTA had ended.

History

Table of Contents

Introduction: the nature and measurement of post-traumatic amnesia -- Method -- Results - Group -- Discussion - Group -- Results and discussion - Individual subjects -- Conclusion.

Notes

Includes bibliography August, 1996

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis masters research

Degree

Thesis (M.A. (Hons.)), Macquarie University, School of Behavioural Sciences, Dept. of Psychology

Department, Centre or School

Dept. of Psychology

Year of Award

1997

Principal Supervisor

Corinne Roberts

Rights

Copyright disclaimer: http://www.copyright.mq.edu.au Copyright Anne Pfaff 1997. This thesis was digitised for the purposes of Document Delivery. Macquarie University ResearchOnline attempted to locate the author but where this has not been possible; we are making available, open access, of the thesis which may be used for the purposes of private research and study. If you have any enquiries or issues regarding this work being made available please contact Macquarie University ResearchOnline - researchonline@mq.edu.au. If you wish to access the complete thesis, on receipt of a Document Supply Request, placed with Macquarie University Library by another library, we will consider supplying a copy of this thesis. For more information on Document Supply, please contact ill@library.mq.edu.au

Language

English

Extent

xi, 152 p. ill

Former Identifiers

mq:20073 http://hdl.handle.net/1959.14/174977 1559125

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