Lewis, Richard S. Department of Psychology, Pomona College, Claremont, California.
Last reviewed:February 2021
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- Neurological amnesia
- Temporal lobe damage
- Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome
- Preserved memory function
- Multiple memory systems
- Memory improvements
- Functional amnesia
- Functional retrograde amnesia
- Dissociative identity disorders
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
A significant, yet relatively selective loss of memory. Amnesia is a type of memory loss, often resulting from brain disease or injury (see illustration). The inability to remember can be temporary or permanent. In general, amnesia can be characterized along two dimensions with respect to its onset: an inability to remember events that occurred after the onset of amnesia is referred to as anterograde amnesia, and a deficit in remembering events that occurred prior to the onset of amnesia is referred to as retrograde amnesia. Amnesia can be due to a variety of causes, or etiologies, and it can be classified according to whether the cause is primarily neurological or psychological in origin. See also: Brain; Memory; Nervous system (vertebrate); Neurobiology; Psychology
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