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Topographical amnesia.
  1. E De Renzi,
  2. P Faglioni,
  3. P Villa


    The ability to learn to criterion a visually-guided stylus maze was found impaired in patients with right posterior cerebral damage, not only in comparison with controls but also with other hemisphere-damaged groups. The contribution of the corresponding left sided area to this task is dubious, and certainly not substantial. This finding points to the independent organisation of long-term spatial memory in the right posterior cerebral cortex, an inference that was further supported by the study of two cases. The first was a female patient with right temporo-parietal softening (as suggested by clinical, EEG, and brain scan data) who showed topographical amnesia and inability to learn the visual maze over 275 trials. On an extensive battery of tests she was found free from disorders of space perception, and from verbal and visual memory impairment. The second was a patient presenting with severe global amnesia who, nevertheless, had no difficulty in route finding, and reached the criterion on the maze in 31 trials.

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