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How can I get back my memory?

06 Oct
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User's Question

Hi,

 

I am a 30 year old woman, working and married. I have had an unfortunate accident while I was travelling with my family Jamshedpur from Orissa. Our car crashed with a huge bus; my family was injured, but minor stitches helped. I was in hospital and it took me a month to recover, as I was driving. I have joined my work 4 months back, but I realize I have lost some memory of my previous days. I mean, I remember my family, my collegues, my work, my daily life, but sometimes, I find it really hard to recall the name of some of my collegues; if anyone suddenly asks my address, I need to think, I may not be able to recall the postal code etc.

last week my husband was trying to talk to me about a get together at a friend's marriage; though I kept knodding to everything he said, I could not just recall a single thing about the event he was mentioning; when it happened, where we went, wat I wore, who were the friends present, nothing; I was blank.

I fear, my mind has lost some important information perhaps. Can I get help?

07 Oct
Dr. Ibrahim Abunada

Doctors Answer

Oct 07, 2016 11:24 PM

Dear I passed through your massage and understand your pathetic condition. I think you passed through a very serious accident which cause this dramatic change in your daily life. I do believe that you need somebody who is a specialist in such conditions like yours. As you might know that there are three generalized categories in which amnesia could be acquired by a person. The three categories are head trauma (example: head injuries), traumatic events (example: seeing something devastating to the mind), or physical deficiencies (example: atrophy of the hippocampus). The majority of amnesia and related memory issues derive from the first two categories as these are more common and the third could be considered a sub category of the first.

  • Head trauma is a very broad range as it deals with any kind of injury or active action toward the brain which might cause loss of memory. Retrograde and anterograde amnesia are more often seen from events like this, an exact example of a cause of the two would be electroshock therapy, which would cause both briefly for the receiving patient.
  • Traumatic events are more subjective. What is traumatic is dependent on what the person finds to be traumatic. Regardless, a traumatic event is an event where something so distressing occurs that the mind chooses to forget rather than deal with the stress. A common example of amnesia that is caused by traumatic events is dissociative amnesia, which occurs when the person forgets an event that has deeply disturbed them. An example would be a person forgetting a fatal and graphic car accident involving their loved ones.
  • Physical deficiencies are different from head trauma, because physical deficiencies lean more toward passive physical issues. Surgery that removes part of the brain is active and thus head trauma, while the surgery also causes the surrounding areas to atrophy, which is passive.
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Types of memory loss

Retrograde amnesia refers to inability to recall memories before onset of amnesia. One may be able to encode new memories after the incident. Retrograde is usually caused by head trauma or brain damage to parts of the brain besides the hippocampus. The hippocampus is responsible for encoding new memory. Episodic memory is more likely to be affected than semantic memory. The damage is usually caused by head trauma, cerebrovascular accident, stroke, tumor, hypoxia, encephalitis, or chronic alcoholism. People suffering from retrograde amnesia are more likely to remember general knowledge rather than specifics. Recent memories are less likely to be recovered, but older memories will be easier to recall due to strengthening over time. Retrograde amnesia is usually temporary and can be treated by exposing them to memories from the loss. Another type of consolidation (process by which memories become stable in the brain) occurs over much longer periods of time/days, weeks, months and years and likely involves transfer of information from the hippocampus to more permanent storage site in the cortex. The operation of this longer-term consolidation process is seen in the retrograde amnesia of patients with hippocampal damage who can recall memories from childhood relatively normally, but are impaired when recalling experiences that occurred just a few years prior to the time they became amnesic.

Post-traumatic amnesia is generally due to a head injury (example: a fall, a knock on the head). Traumatic amnesia is often transient, but may be permanent or either anterograde, retrograde, or mixed type. The extent of the period covered by the amnesia is related to the degree of injury and may give an indication of the prognosis for recovery of other functions. Mild trauma, such as a car accident that results in no more than mild whiplash, might cause the occupant of a car to have no memory of the moments just before the accident due to a brief interruption in the short/long-term memory transfer mechanism. The sufferer may also lose knowledge of who people are. Having longer periods of amnesia or consciousness after an injury may be an indication that recovery from remaining concussion symptoms will take much longer

In the light of the above mentioned information, I recommend you to contact specialist in your residency not an online specialist only. You need to work closely on many different issues together with the specialist. Moreover you might need to do some medical examinations to exclude any organic cause for your loss of memory. Take Care