cognitive neuroscience, prefrontal functions, neural mechanisms of attention and memory, clinical neuropsychology, psychophysiology
Electrophysiological (event-related brain potentials [ERPs]), neuropsychological, and behavioral techniques are employed to study attention, memory and executive functions in humans. Experimental participants are typically neurological patients with CT or MRI scan defined brain damage, head injury patients with neurological complaints, but no verified brain injury, and age-matched healthy controls. There is a current interest in the utilization of psychophysiological methods to supplement the traditional neuropsychological assessment techniques used in clinical practice. Electrophysiological measures provide on-line information of brain processing that neuropsychological tests cannot. By recording ERPs it is possible to observe the spatio-temporal flow of processing events in the brain before, during, and after a specific stimulus or decision. Cognitive dysfunction may occur at any processing stage. Thus, specifying a cognitive impairment in terms of a dysfunction in one or more components of an information processing model would be an important addition to conventional neuropsychological examinations. Detailed functional diagnoses may in turn be valuable in the planning of individual rehabilitation programs.
Solbakk, A.-K., Reinvang, I., Nielsen, C. S., & Sundet, K. (1999). ERP indicators of disturbed attention in mild closed head injury: A frontal lobe syndrome? Psychophysiology, 36, 802-817.
Solbakk, A.-K., Reinvang, I., & Nielsen, C. S. (2000). ERP indices of resource allocation difficulties in mild head injury. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, 22, 743-760.
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