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Anterograde Amnesia Essay Sample

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Anterograde Amnesia Essay Sample

Anterograde amnesia is the process of not being able to form new memories; therefore, the person suffering from this disease can only remember memories from their past. People who suffer from anterograde amnesia are able to make new memories, but the following day they are unable to remember that memory. In the movie 50 First Dates, the main character, Lucy, has anterograde amnesia. Lucy and her father were in a car crash on October 13th and from that day on she can only recall up to the night before the accident. She cannot remember new memories.

Every day when Lucy wakes up she believes it is Sunday, October 13th. She has no idea that the day she thinks it is occurred over a year ago. Lucy reads the newspaper every morning, and to keep her from becoming upset and confused her father printer hundreds of newspapers from the day of which the accident occurred. Lucy has the same schedule every day. She goes to the local diner to have breakfast, paints in her father’s work shop, celebrates her father’s birthday, watches the sixth sense, and then goes to bed. While Lucy is in bed, her father and brother repaint the workshop white so Lucy can paint it again the following day. Lucy’s father and brother are forced to repeat the same day, every day as well. This becomes a normal routine for them.

When Lucy meets Henry one morning during breakfast they really hit off and she asks him to meet her for breakfast the next morning at the diner. When he shows up the following morning Lucy has no idea who he is and refers to him being a pervert. Once Lucy’s condition is explained to Henry he understands, but he still likes her. Every morning Henry goes to the diner and tries to get Lucy to eat breakfast with him. The one morning Henry had to experience something he’s never had to before. As Lucy was talking to Henry she noticed a police officer writing a ticket to put on her car since her plates had expired. Lucy ran outside to tell him it was a mistake but when she looked at the newspaper the man standing next to her was holding, she noticed that it was not October. Whenever Lucy discovers the real date her father and brother show her all of the newspapers of October 13th they have in the house. They then proceed to show her a binder full of newspaper
clippings about the car accident, pictures of Lucy after the accident, and then they go and talk to her doctor so she can hear it from him.

Lucy’s temporal lobe was severely damaged in the car accident and her scar tissue appears to have the inability to convert short-term memory into long-term memory as she sleeps. This condition allows for Lucy to only remember the memories she had up until the day of the accident. Lucy didn’t know Henry before the accident; therefore she could not remember who he was every morning when he approached her at the diner. All of these issues Lucy has factor into the cause of anterograde amnesia. Not being able to store memories and information into your long-term memory. This puts the occasional stress on people around Lucy. Some situations help people who suffer from anterograde amnesia. In Lucy’s case it helped her to have a better understanding of the day if Henry made her a video every morning before she got up. He would have the tape next to her with a note attached telling her to watch it. The tape would include who he was in relation to her, where they were located (i.e. in their house, on the boat, etc.), who they were going to be with that day, as well as the recap of the accident. Living with anterograde amnesia is very hard and frustrating for not only the victim, but everyone around that person.

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