Neuroanatomy, Prefrontal Cortex

In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan.


Why are we capable of doing things that are difficult, of making choices to go the hard route or the extra mile? Much of this ability can be attributed to the bulk of the frontal cortex in an area known as the prefrontal cortex (PFC). One of the last places in the brain to mature, the prefrontal cortex is thought of as the “personality center” and is the cortical region that makes us uniquely human. It is where we process moment-to-moment input from our surroundings, compare that input to past experiences, and then react to them. It is where we manifest our insight, foresight, and planning capabilities into the actions that define who we are. Lesions in this area produce a number of neuropsychiatric disorders that tend to present with disinhibition, apathy, loss of initiative, and personality changes. Discoveries are still being made about the role the PFC plays within our lives and how various dysfunctions alter its function.

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