eISSN: 2084-9885
ISSN: 1896-6764
Neuropsychiatria i Neuropsychologia/Neuropsychiatry and Neuropsychology
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SCImago Journal & Country Rank
2/2012
vol. 7
 
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abstract:

Original article
Knowledge about own memory in patients with right or left hemisphere pathology – experimental studies

Anna Kuzaka
,
Ewa Małgorzata Szepietowska

Neuropsychiatria i Neuropsychologia 2012; 7, 2: 57–64
Online publish date: 2012/10/06
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Background: Unawareness of one’s own deficiencies (anosognosia) is a significant element of the clinical image of pathologies of the right hemisphere, the frontal lobe, and dementia. Current analyses focus on the scope and mechanisms of anosognosia. One of the fields of research is the knowledge of one’s own memory (metamemory) concerning subjective evaluation of characteristics of one’s own memory, evaluation of learning, changes taking place due to aging and emotional reaction towards the deficiencies. The data relating to metamemory of people with left and the right hemisphere pathology are ambiguous. Patients with right hemisphere pathology overestimate their memory, and those with left hemisphere pathology underestimate it.

Material and methods: The participants of the research were patients with left hemisphere pathology (n = 25), with right hemisphere pathology (n = 27) and the reference group (n = 52). The following were compared: subjective evaluation of the general efficiency of one’s memory, subjective evaluation of the level of remembering the given material, actual carrying out and the level of accuracy of judgments. The analyses included the type of stimulus (verbal, non-verbal), localization of brain pathology (frontal, rear) and other variables.

Results: Intergroup differences concerning the accuracy of judgments in comparison to the actual carrying out were shown. The patients with right hemisphere pathology overestimate their mnestic abilities, regardless of the stimulus type. A higher level of overestimation concerns non-verbal material. The patients with left hemisphere pathology underestimate their ability to remember verbal stimuli, and overestimate their ability to remember non-verbal stimuli. The patients from the reference group underestimate their abilities. The patients with damage of the right rear hemisphere overestimate their abilities in all types of tasks.

Conclusions: The level of accuracy of knowledge about one’s own memory depends on the localization of pathology within the hemispheres. Judgments on one’s own memory (its specific aspects as well as the general evaluation) are connected to a different extent with the depression mood and the actual carrying out; they are also shaped by the influence of other psychological and demographic factors (age, education).
keywords:

metamemory, subjective evaluation of one’s own memory, lateralization of brain pathology

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