Post-traumatic stress disorder: a right temporal lobe syndrome?
permalinkJournal of Neural Engineering - 2010-10-28Engdahl B, Leuthold A, Tan HRM, Lewis S, Winskowski AM, Dikel TN, Georgopoulos AP10.1088/1741-2560/7/6/066005In a recent paper (Georgopoulos et al 2010 J. Neural Eng. 7 016011) we reported on the power of the
Synchronous Neural Interactionstest to differentiate post-traumatic stress disorder (
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder) subjects from healthy control subjects and to classify them with a high degree of accuracy. Here we show that the main differences in cortical communication circuitry between these two groups lie in the miscommunication of temporal and parietal and/or parieto-occipital right hemispheric areas with other brain areas. This lateralized temporal-posterior pattern of miscommunication was very similar but was attenuated in patients with
PTSDin remission. These findings are consistent with observations (Penfield 1958 Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 44 51-66, Penfield and Perot 1963 Brain 86 595-696, Gloor 1990 Brain 113 1673-94, Banceaud et al 1994 Brain 117 71-90, Fried 1997 J. Neuropsychiatry Clin. Neurosci. 9 420-8) that electrical stimulation of the temporal cortex in awake human subjects, mostly in the right hemisphere, can elicit the re-enactment and re-living of past experiences. Based on these facts, we attribute our findings to the re-experiencing component of
PTSDand hypothesize that it reflects an involuntarily persistent activation of interacting neural networks involved in experiential consolidation.