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Korsakoff’s syndrome

a syndrome occurring primarily in cases of severe, chronic alcoholism. It is caused by thiamine (vitamin B1) deficiency and damage to the mammillary bodies. Patients with Korsakoff’s syndrome demonstrate dense anterograde and retrograde amnesia, which is thought to be due to lesions in the anterior or dorsomedial nuclei (or both) of the thalamus. Other symptoms include confabulation, lack of insight, apathy, and impoverished conversation. The selective and acute nature of the memory disorder in Korsakoff’s syndrome sets it apart from alcoholic dementia (see alcohol-induced persisting dementia), a syndrome characterized by more global impairments in intellectual functioning that evolve gradually over time. Korsakoff’s syndrome often follows an episode of Wernicke’s encephalopathy (see Wernicke–Korsakoff syndrome). Also called Korsakoff’s disease; Korsakoff’s psychosis. [first described in 1887 by Sergei Korsakoff (1853–1900), Russian neurologist]

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Psychology term of the day

June 18th 2024

unipolar mania

unipolar mania

a disorder in which only excitement, overactivity, and similar euphoric symptoms are seen. This is a rare condition, as such manic episodes tend eventually to be followed by one or more major depressive episodes.