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By D.F. Swaab, E. Fliers, M. Mirmiran, W.A. Van Gool and F. Van Haaren (Eds.)

ISBN-10: 0444807934

ISBN-13: 9780444807939

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This memory impairment is what Kral (1962) calls ‘benign senescent forgetfulness’ (BSF), the inability to recall unimportant or minor details of an episode while the episode itself can be recalled. This deficit is not permanent and the information might be recalled on a different occasion. Aging. Research of memory deficits in aging has shown that elderly subjects have an impaired sensory memory. g. Sperling, 1960). When very short stimulus durations (50 ms) were used, only two out of ten elderly subjects showed normal sensory memory as compared to nine out of nine controls (Walsh, 1975).

This is a relatively pure index which is not contaminated by a perceptual or motor component. A similar procedure can be performed with the ‘trail making test’ (see Lezak, 1983). The subtraction of time scores gives a timed measure for the ease at which a concept shift is made (here shifting between letters and digits, Vink and Jolles, 1985). Behavioral neurology A different approach to assess cognitive functioning in geriatry has been presented by the neuropsychologist Luria (1 966, 1973). He presented a model of brain-behavior relationships which served as a basis for an extensive neuropsychological investigation.

This may mean that the demented patients do not recognize the object and are, therefore, not able to find the correct word. Patients who are aphasic due to a focal lesion in the posterior parts of the neocortex may also be deficient in object naming but the aphasic, in contrast to the demented patient, characteristically gives the strong impression that he knows what the object is without being able to find the right word to describe it (Rockford, 1971). In experiments designed to assess word production in demented patients, Miller and Hague (1975) used a fluency task in which the subjects were required to produce words beginning with a certain letter.

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