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Title: Contribution of autobiographic memory impairment to subjective memory complaints in focal epilepsy.
Austin Authors: Rayner, Genevieve ;Siveges, Benjamin;Allebone, James;Pieters, Jessamae;Wilson, Sarah J
Affiliation: Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Australia
Department of Clinical Neuropsychology, Austin Health, Heidelberg, Victoria, Australia
Issue Date: Jan-2020
Date: 2019-11-21
Publication information: Epilepsy & behavior : E&B 2020; 102: 106636
Abstract: "My memory is terrible!" is a common refrain among people with epilepsy, but such complaints are not reliably linked to poor performances on standard tests of memory. Negative affect like depression and anxiety are the most robust predictor of these complaints; however, neither do they entirely account for the phenomenon. The contribution of autobiographic memory impairment to subjective memory complaints in focal epilepsy has not been well-explored despite autobiographic memory impairments being common in patients with epilepsy, and the face validity of relating day-to-day memory failings to such a personally relevant form of memory. The current study sought to clarify whether autobiographic memory dysfunction contributes to subjective complaints in epilepsy, above and beyond negative affect, objective memory impairment, and epileptological factors in a large sample of patients with drug-resistant focal epilepsy relative to healthy controls (N = 135). Patients were stratified into groups with mesial temporal (MT; n = 40) versus nonmesial temporal (NMT; n = 46) foci. Compared to controls (n = 46), both patient groups reported more bitter subjective memory complaints (p < 0.001, large effect size), demonstrated poorer episodic (p = 0.001, large effect size) and semantic autobiographical recall (p = 0.004, medium effect size), and had higher levels of depressive symptomatology (p = 0.011, medium effect size), and trait neuroticism (p = 0.015, medium effect size). Contrary to expectations, multiple regression analyses revealed that autobiographic memory function was not an independent predictor of subjective memory complaints in either group with epilepsy. In people with epilepsy with MT foci, objective verbal memory dysfunction, neuroticism, and female gender predicted memory complaints (R2 = 0.70, p = 0.015), whereas only neuroticism predicted memory complaints in people with epilepsy with NMT foci (R2 = 0.21, p = 0.001). Although patients' poor recall of their autobiographical memories did not contribute to their concerns about their day-to-day memory function, the findings indicate that the location of the epileptogenic focus can provide clues as to the underlying contributors to subjective memory complaints in focal epilepsy. Important clinical implications to stem from these findings include the need for clinicians to adopt a patient-tailored, multifactorial lens when managing memory complaints in people with epilepsy, taking into account both psychological and cognitive factors.
DOI: 10.1016/j.yebeh.2019.106636
Journal: Epilepsy & behavior : E&B
PubMed URL: 31760203
Type: Journal Article
Subjects: Autobiographic memory
Subjective memory complaints
Appears in Collections:Journal articles

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