Q: Korsakoff syndrome (KS) is characterized by? (select one)
A) selective anterograde amnesia
B) selective retrograde amnesia
C) both of the above
D) none of the above
E) generalized amnesia
Korsakoff syndrome (KS) is nothing but a distinct advanced neuropsychiatric manifestation of Wernicke encephalopathy (WE) with the same cause i.e., thiamine loss. This is more pronounced in ETOH abusers. It has its own specific MRI findings. It is a disorder of selective anterograde and retrograde amnesia. It is characteristically different from general amnesia (Choice E) as there is an intact sensorium, and preservation of long-term memory and other cognitive skills. Interestingly, attention and social behavior are usually preserved. Although confabulation is more common, patients with KS stay unaware of their illness.
KS is irreversible but Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors & memantine have been tried with some success.
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