Running Head: REFLECTION & EXPLORATION ON DIAGNOSING CAHALAN Reflection & Exploration on Diagnosing Cahalan Abigail Garces 250917497 Psychology 3227B: Neuropsychology
REFLECTION & EXPLORATION ON DIAGNOSING CAHALAN 2 In Part 2, Cahalan spent the majority of her time at the hospital. Within a week, her short-term memory had obliterated. The author explained the importance of the hippocampus and mentioned patient H.M., who all psychology students know to be a highly profiled case. She gave the readers further insight by discussing a more recent event of Clive Wearing. I was surprised to read that there was a similar instance with a different patient because when learning about the hippocampus, H.M. was the only case mentioned. I was curious and found an article that discussed the case of Clive Wearing by Addis, Corballis & Suddendorf (2009) who reviewed the neuroscientific evidence for the continuity of mental time travel to the past and future. It suggested that human language evolved primarily for the communication of episodes (past or imagined future) and concluded when and why mental time travel evolved in hominin evolution. Wearing was a musician who contracted a herpes virus which destroyed his hippocampus and left him amnesic. This type of amnesia demonstrated the difference between semantic and episodic memory. His semantic memory was intact as he retained his normal vocabulary, recognized his family, continued to play piano and conducted choirs. However, his episodic memory was impaired as he would immediately forget what he just experienced.