We report a single-case study of a female patient (VL) who exhibited frequent episodes of erroneous recollections triggered by everyday events. Based on neuropsychological testing, VL was classified as suffering from mild to moderate dementia (MMSE=18) and was given a diagnosis of probable Alzheimer׳s disease. Her memory functions were uniformly impaired but her verbal abilities were generally well preserved. A structural MRI scan showed extensive areas of gray matter atrophy particularly in frontal and medial-temporal (MTL) areas. Results of experimental recognition tests showed that VL had very high false alarm rates on tests using pictures, faces and auditory stimuli, but lower false alarm rates on verbal tests. We provide a speculative account of her erroneous recollections in terms of her MTL and frontal pathology. In outline, we suggest that owing to binding failures in MTL regions, VL׳s recognition processes were forced to rely on earlier than normal stages of analysis. Environmental features on a given recognition trial may have combined with fragments persisting from previous trials resulting in erroneous feelings of familiarity and of recollection that were not discounted or edited out, due to her impaired frontal processes.
Craik, FBarense, MRathbone, CGrusec, JStuss, DGao, FScott, CBlack, S
Faculty of Health and Life Sciences\Department of Psychology, Social Work and Public Health
Year of publication: 2014Date of RADAR deposit: 2016-03-04
RADAR: Research Archive and Digital Asset RepositoryAbout RADAR