Semantic acquisition in childhood amnesic syndrome: a prospective study

Neuroreport. 2004 Feb 9;15(2):377-81. doi: 10.1097/00001756-200402090-00033.


Amnesic patients can acquire new semantic knowledge despite a profound deficit of episodic memory. Although retrospective studies have been carried out on adults and children, prospective studies have been restricted to adults. The aim of the present work was to assess the acquisition of new semantic knowledge in amnesic children. The semantic protocol, composed of short, illustrated texts, was based on an original methodology which included an assessment of episodic memory on two occasions. Two amnesic children acquired new concepts despite major episodic disturbance, illustrated notably by a lack of recollection in episodic tasks. Our findings lend weight to the assumption that forming new semantic knowledge does not necessarily involve episodic memory, and provide methodological pointers for children's neuropsychological rehabilitation.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Amnesia / physiopathology
  • Amnesia / psychology*
  • Amnesia / rehabilitation
  • Child
  • Diencephalon / injuries
  • Diencephalon / pathology
  • Diencephalon / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Learning / physiology*
  • Learning Disabilities / physiopathology
  • Learning Disabilities / psychology*
  • Learning Disabilities / rehabilitation
  • Male
  • Memory / physiology*
  • Nerve Net / injuries
  • Nerve Net / pathology
  • Nerve Net / physiopathology
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Prospective Studies
  • Recovery of Function / physiology
  • Semantics*
  • Temporal Lobe / injuries
  • Temporal Lobe / pathology
  • Temporal Lobe / physiopathology