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Title: Accelerated long-term forgetting in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy : a study pre and post-surgery
Author: Evans, S. J.
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2012
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ALF is a relatively newly described phenomenon in neuropsychology and refers to a deficit in retaining recently learned information over delays of 24 hours or more, despite normal memory acquisition and retention over short delays of up to 30 minutes. The underlying causes of this phenomenon are currently unknown, however one of the proposed theories suggests that memories must go through a period of "slow" consolidation, that is, after a period of initial learning and consolidation, memories remain vulnerable to disruption until a "slow" consolidation process has occurred. Medial temporal lobe and neocortical structures are indicated in this process, including the hippocampus. This thesis examined the possibility that seizure activity disrupts the "slow" consolidation process, thereby resulting in ALF. Literature Review: A literature review explores the relationship between aspects of seizure activity thought to impair memory more broadly in TLE, and considers these in light of papers reporting ALF. Methodological issues are common in the ALF literature, with papers adopting heterogeneous testing procedures of varying quality. The main findings from the review suggest that that the relationship between seizure activity and ALF is mixed. It is recommended that future studies adopt more robust testing methodology and develop AB experimental designs to assess salient factors that may mediate ALF. Research Report: An empirical study adopted a longitudinal pre/post surgery design to examine the hypothesis that ALF is related to ongoing seizure activity. The results suggest that epilepsy surgery can improve ALF in medically-refractory patients with TLE, and this appears to bring their rate of forgetting in line with demographically matched healthy controls.
Supervisor: isaac, Claire Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available