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Central Nervous System - The Brain > Higher Mental Functions > Flashcards

Flashcards in Higher Mental Functions Deck (17)
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1
Q

What is encompassed in Consciousness?

A

Perception of sensation

Voluntary initiation and control of movement

Capabilities associated with higher mental processing

- Is superimposed on other types of neural activity: totally interconnected

2
Q

Define Clinical Consciousness

A

a continuum that grades levels of behavior

awak, alert & oriented – Disoriented – Lethargic – Obtunded – Stuporous – Comatose

3
Q

What is LOC?

A

Loss of Consciousness

(any loss of consciousness reported as LOC)

4
Q

Describe Brain Waves

A
  • Normal brain function involves continuous electrical activity
  • Patterns of neuronal electrical activity recorded are called brain waves
    • Each person’s brain waves are unique
    • Change with age, sensory stimuli, brain disease, and chemical states of the body
5
Q

What are the four types of Brain Waves?

A

Alpha

Beta

Theta

Delta

6
Q

Describe an Alpha brain wave

A

regular & rhythmic, low-amplitude, slow & synchronous; indicate an “idling” brain

7
Q

Describe a Beta brain wave

A

rhythmic, more irregular waves occurring during the awake & mentally alert state

8
Q

Describe a Theta brain wave

A

more irregular than alpha waves; common in children but abnormal in adults

9
Q

Describe a Delta brain wave

A

high-amplitude waves seen in deep sleep & when RAS input is reduced

10
Q

How is brain wave activity recorded?

A

through an Electroencephalogram (EEG)

11
Q

What is the unit of measure for brain wave frequency?

A

Hertz (Hz)

12
Q

Clinical Correlates for Higher Mental Functions

describe EEGs

A

EEGs are used to diagnose and localize brain lesions, tumors, infarcts, infections, abscesses, and epileptic lesions

- a flat EEG (no electrical activity) is clinical evidence of death

13
Q

Clinical Correlates for Higher Mental Functions

What is Epilepsy?

A
  • Regions of abnormal electrical discharge with physical manifestations
  • is not associated with, nor does it cause, intellectual impairments
  • often preceded by a sensory hallucination (taste, smell, flash of light); known as an aura
14
Q

Describe a Tonic-Clonic seizure (grand mal)

A
  • Focal point in the motor cortex
  • patient will lose consciousness, fall stiffly, and have uncontrollable jerking, loss of bowel and bladder control & severe biting of the tongue
  • bones are often broken due to intensity of convulsions
15
Q

Describe an Absence seizure (petit mal)

A

mild seizures seen in young children where the expression goes blank for a few seconds with brief LOC

16
Q

Describe Epilepsy Treatments

A
  • Can be controlled with anti-convulsive drugs
  • Valproic acid, a non-sedating drug, enhances GABA (inhibitory) and is a drug of choice
  • Vagus nerve stimulators can be implanted under the skin of the chest or near medulla and can keep electrical activity of the brain from becoming chaotic
  • UW researches developed electrode implants that pinpoint locus of seizure (thus focal point of seizure can be removed w/out damaging other areas)
17
Q

How do they treat Intractable Seizures?

A

severing of the Corpus Callosum is used as a last resort.

Associate problems: R/L hemisphere information transfer significantly minimized; Speech-Language deficites, alien hand syndrome