Chapter

The syndrome of transient epileptic amnesia

Adam Zeman, Chris Butler, John Hodges and Narinder Kapur

in Epilepsy and Memory

Published in print June 2012 | ISBN: 9780199580286
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191739408 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199580286.003.0008
The syndrome of transient epileptic amnesia

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Epilepsy reflects a disturbance of a fundamental aspect of brain function, the synchronized rhythmic activity of large populations of neurons. As human memory also depends upon the synchronized rhythmic activity of large populations of neurons, it should not be surprising that epilepsy is commonly associated with memory disturbance, nor that there is an intimate relationship between the brain mechanisms for memory in the medial temporal lobes (MTLs) and the pathogenesis of seizures. This chapter reviews what is known of the disruptive effects of a variety of seizure-types on memory, before focusing on a form of epilepsy of which, unusually, the main manifestation is amnesia.

Keywords: epilepsy; brain function; neurons; memory disturbance; medial temporal lobes; seizures

Chapter.  9366 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neuroscience

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