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Neuropsychology. 2010 Nov;24(6):795-803. doi: 10.1037/a0020136.

Levels-of-processing effects on recollection and familiarity during transient global amnesia and after recovery.

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  • 1Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, Department of Neuropsychology, Ruhr-University Bochum, Universit√§tsstrasse 150, 44780 Bochum, Germany.



The aim of the present study was to investigate the pattern of recollection and familiarity deficits and the modulation of recognition memory performance by the depth of encoding (deep vs. shallow) in transient global amnesia (TGA).


Ten patients with TGA and 11 control subjects were assessed during the acute stage and after recovery 7 to 19 days later.


Both recollection and familiarity were impaired in the acute stage and showed significant, albeit not complete, recovery by the time of the postacute assessment. The patients did, however, show a significant levels-of-processing effect, which was significantly reduced in acute TGA, but not at follow-up.


The significant levels-of-processing effect during acute TGA might be linked to recruitment of the prefrontal cortex.

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