Paradoxical prosopagnosia in semantic dementia


Objective: To study episodic and semantic memory for faces and other non-verbal information in semantic dementia (SD). Background: Semantic memory impaired in the rare diagnosis of SD by definition, including knowledge about well- known persons and their appearance. Episodic memory is held to be better preserved. Methods: Two computerized face recognition tests were administered, one measuring episodic memory (Male Faces) and one semantic memory (Political Faces) in addition to a comprehensive test battery. A computerised test of non-verbal semantic memory for national symbols (Euro Flags) was also administered druring the retention interval of the Male Faces test. Results: The SD participants were severely impaired in the episodic face recognition test. In contrast, their performance was in the normal range in Euro Flags and Political Faces, based on knowledge of national political figures. Conclusion: The results are discussed in terms of preserved dynamic memory and severely impaired memory for static facial information in semantic dementia. Research proposals regarding further studies of this paradoxical prosopagnosia in semantic dementia are presented in order to clarify issues regarding static versus dynamic aspects of face memory.

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Fernaeus, S., Ostberg, P., Wahlund, L. and Bogdanovic, N. (2012) Paradoxical prosopagnosia in semantic dementia. Advances in Alzheimer's Disease, 1, 59-67. doi: 10.4236/aad.2012.13008.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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