A case of unusual autobiographical remembering

Neurocase. 2006 Feb;12(1):35-49. doi: 10.1080/13554790500473680.


This report describes AJ, a woman whose remembering dominates her life. Her memory is "nonstop, uncontrollable, and automatic." AJ spends an excessive amount of time recalling her personal past with considerable accuracy and reliability. If given a date, she can tell you what she was doing and what day of the week it fell on. She differs from other cases of superior memory who use practiced mnemonics to remember vast amounts of personally irrelevant information. We propose the name hyperthymestic syndrome, from the Greek word thymesis meaning remembering, and that AJ is the first reported case.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anxiety / complications
  • Anxiety / diagnosis
  • Association Learning
  • Autobiographies as Topic
  • Female
  • Functional Laterality*
  • Humans
  • Memory Disorders / complications
  • Memory Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Mental Recall*
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Phobic Disorders / complications
  • Phobic Disorders / diagnosis
  • Retention, Psychology
  • Self Concept*
  • Time Perception*