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The image of memory: relationship between autobiographical memory and mental imagery in Korsakoff syndrome

Frédérique Robin, Ahmed Moustafa, Mohamad El Haj
Applied Neuropsychology. Adult 2020 January 29, : 1-7
31994909
We evaluated the relationship between autobiographical memory and mental imagery in Korsakoff syndrome (KS). We invited patients with KS and control participants to retrieve personal events and to perform measures of visual imagery (Taller/Wilder task), and spatial imagery (Clock Angles task). On the Taller/Wilder task, participants had to generate a mental image of an object presented as a word and determine whether the object was taller than it was wide. On the Clock Angles task, participants had to imagine the angle created by the hands on a clock set to a certain time and determine whether that angle was <90°. Analyses showed impaired spatial imagery and autobiographical memory but intact visual imagery in KS. Analyses also demonstrated significant correlations between visual imagery, spatial imagery and autobiographical memory in patients with KS and control participants. Our findings demonstrate that autobiographical retrieval in KS is associated with the ability to retrieve (visual imagery) and manipulate mental images (spatial imagery).

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