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Amnesia Tips

Amnesia is a condition in which memory is disturbed. The causes of amnesia are organic or Amnesiafunctional. Organic causes include damage to the brain, through trauma or disease, or use of certain (generally sedative) drugs. Functional causes are psychological factors, such as defense mechanisms. Hysterical post-traumatic amnesia is an example of this. Amnesia may also be spontaneous, in the case of transient global amnesia. This global type of amnesia is more common in middle-aged to elderly people, particularly males, and usually lasts less than 24 hours.

Last Updated -13th December 2005

Types of amnesia

Alcohol Abuse

Amnesia can also be caused by acute or long-term alcohol use. In particular, heavy alcohol consumption combined with poor diet and low intake of thiamine leads to a partially reversible syndrome called Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. Symptoms of confusion, ataxia of gait, and involuntary movement of the eye may be reversed by parenteral administration of thiamine. Even though only about 20% recover from the associated amnesia, some researchers believe that oral thiamine administered to alcoholics may act as a prophylactic. In a report of a study of a 68-year-old man who had a slow onset of Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome, the authors noted that an immediate high concentration of thiamine maintained wakefulness and level of consciousness.

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