PSYC 3140 Chapter Notes - Chapter 15: Apraxia, Amnesia, Genetic Disorder

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Published on 8 Nov 2011
Department
Course
Chapter 15
Brain disorders that affect cognitive processes:
oLearning
oMemory
oConsciousness
Most cognitive disorders develop much later in life
Three classes of cognitive disorders:
1) Delirium – an often temporary condition displayed as confusion and disorientation
2) Dementia – a progressive condition marked by gradual deterioration of a broad
range of cognitive abilities
3) Amnestic Disorders – dysfunctions of memory due to a medical condition or a drug or
toxin
Once the term organic mental disorders (brain damage or dysfunction was believed to
be involved), the term cognitive disorders has been used – an impairment of cognitive
abilities such as memory, attention, perception and thinking.
Incidence of these disorders rises with increasing age, with rates being
highest for those aged 65 and older.
Delirium
One of the earliest recognized mental disorders – reported more than 2500
years ago
Rapid-onset
Reduced clarity of consciousness and cognition, with confusion,
disorientation, and deficits in memory and language.
Appear confused, disorientated and out of touch with their surroundings
Cannot focus and sustain attention on the simplest of tasks
Develops over hours or a few days and the symptoms can vary over the
course of a day
Affects older adults, people undergoing medical procedures, cancer and
AIDS patients
Common risk factors for older patients include:
oDementia
oMedication
oMedical illness
Delirium subsides relatively quickly, with full recovery expected within a
several weeks.
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Dementia
Gradual-onset deterioration of brain functioning, affecting:
oMemory loss
oInability to recognize objects or faces
oProblems in planning and abstract reasoning
oJudgement
oLanguage
These are associated with frustration and discouragement.
Caused by several medical conditions and the abuse of drugs or alcohol
oStroke – which destroys the blood vessels
oInfectious diseases of syphilis and HIV
oSevere head injury
oToxic and poisonous substances
Diseases such as Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, Alzheimer’s disease
Symptoms
Memory impairment – inability to register ongoing events
oA person can remember how to talk and remember events from
years ago, but not the past hour
Visuospatial skills impairment – can’t find way home
Agnosia – the inability to recognize and name objects
Facial agnosia – the inability to recognize familiar face
Delusions – irrational beliefs
Depression
Agitation
Aggression
Apathy
Can occur at any age but the Alzheimer’s type rarely occurs in people under
45 years
Six classes of dementia based on etiology have been identified:
1) Dementia of the Alzheimer’s type
2) Vascular dementia
3) Dementia due to other general medical conditions
4) Substance-induced persisting dementia
5) Dementia due to multiple etiologies
6) Dementia not otherwise specified
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Document Summary

Brain disorders that affect cognitive processes: learning, memory, consciousness. Most cognitive disorders develop much later in life. Once the term organic mental disorders (brain damage or dysfunction was believed to be involved), the term cognitive disorders has been used an impairment of cognitive abilities such as memory, attention, perception and thinking. Incidence of these disorders rises with increasing age, with rates being highest for those aged 65 and older. One of the earliest recognized mental disorders reported more than 2500 years ago. Reduced clarity of consciousness and cognition, with confusion, disorientation, and deficits in memory and language. Appear confused, disorientated and out of touch with their surroundings. Cannot focus and sustain attention on the simplest of tasks. Develops over hours or a few days and the symptoms can vary over the course of a day. Aids patients: dementia, medication, medical illness several weeks. Affects older adults, people undergoing medical procedures, cancer and. Common risk factors for older patients include:

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