Unformatted text preview: ll are consciously aware. So very difﬁcult diagnosis… if in that
state for more than a year, very unlikely of coming back, so may take off life support. Used neuroimaging to get an indiction of what the mind is doing -- can we use it to make a better diagnoses of the state that these
patients are in. This study was carried out in a 23 year woman -- 5 ﬁves after brain injury was diagnosed as being in vegetative state -- 11 mo. after, they conducted the study on her. She didn't respond to any instructions,
and normal in a vegetative state are reﬂexive movements & sleep-wake cycle. But didn't appear to respond to any kind of instruction. Put woman in the scanner, if any conscious awareness, she would be able to at least
mentally respond to simple instructions -- told her to imagine playing tennis -- and the SMA light up (involved in motor planning & would light up in a normal brain). In other moments was instructed to imagine navigated
through her house -- when normal structures do that you get the PMC, but also Posterior Parietal cortex (PPC) -- and hers light up as well. Two robust signals in a healthy brain, that occured in this woman. So she was able to switch back and forth between two sets of instructions. So it was determined she was not in a vegetative state, but a minimally conscious state. Carried out in other patients as well and sometime it
works and sometimes it doesn't What is Consciousness?! The big question in cognitive neuroscience.
Addressed in numerous books. The "Hard" problem. No clear standard for what
consciousness is. What is Consciousness?!
The “hard problem”: how to deﬁne and measure the phenomenological
Is conciousness something that occurs outside the body, and then is
experience associated with being conscious. !
The Mind/Body Problem
Consciousness resides outside of the
body, in what René Descartes called the
realm of thought (dualism). communicated to the body (view of Descartes). Most neuroscientists believe
consciousness emerges from the body. A true reductionist says that if you can
break down the mind into its basic parts, it could be reassembled to form
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- Fall '11
- Consciousness, Vegetative state, Minimally conscious state