|Dr Dick Swaab[^]
I know that on here there are people who have suffered from, and in some cases even survived, every injury and ailment known to man (and for a few of you known to cattle or sheep). So I was wondering if anyone has any practical experience of amnesia and memory problems.
For those who don't follow my life closely, a recap[^].
For about four weeks after the accident I suffered with a lot of concussion type symptoms, confusion, inability to do simple problem solving, couldn't make decisions, couldn't cook, typed nonsense at times without realising (real nonsense, not just pointless crap). That seemed to clear up.
I was off work from 11th November to 30th December, largely due to the back problems, because of that I didn't really go very far, didn't really do very much, avoided the computer.
I began to notice however, chiefly in conversation with my daughter, that I couldn't remember things that I know have happened, in my childhood, in her early life. Then my wife showed my a picture from out holiday three years ago and I couldn't remember any of that holiday. It is a very odd felling trying to access these older memories, like the pointer to them is there but something deflects me away from accessing them, and it is very unpleasant to try to battle through to them.
When I returned to work and began traveling more widely I noticed other things, people I knew I recognised but had no idea who they were or why (one woman turned out to have worked in the same office as me for 4 years), place names I have driven through hundreds of times I could not recall, songs I would hear on the radio and recognise but have no idea at all who they were by or what they were called. In these cases it is like my brain goes straight for the information but the file is blank so my brain just stands there staring at it. If I am in conversation when this happens I just pause for a long time, I am unable to think around the problem because I am stuck at a dead end.
And processes and things at work I cannot remember either. Things I know I wrote but cannot remember my way around them, I am having to work things out all the time rather than just doing things. Although stuff must still be in there, because on a few occasions I have written code, not understood what I am writing and then when run it has produced the desired effect, quite unexpectedly. My typing seems faster too, as if I have finally given up thinking where my fingers are going and just let them get on with it.
Simple mental tasks that I used to find easy are also now far more difficult, or even impossible at times. One day last week I needed to meet my wife at lunchtime. I knew exactly where I was, I knew where I needed to be, about 8 miles away. I have been there and all places around many, many times. I could not work out how to get there from here, couldn't do it at all. Just drove in the right direction and the way kind of revealed itself as I went along. I have always had a superb sense of direction, if I went anywhere once I could know my way back from almost anywhere else.
Simple maths is also beyond me, the numbers game on Countdown for example, I cannot get close to the answer without pen and paper and I used to be able to do those or at least now how to get to the answer every time.
It isn't just old memories that are missing either. I've had to buy a new car, the old one got written off, I'm trying to work out how the fuel consumption is going so when filling up last week I tried to remember the previous time I had done (less than a week earlier) and had no memory of it at all. Couldn't remember the garage I'd used, what day it was, time of day, what else I had been doing before or after. Nothing at all.
And on Tuesday I left the house and according to my wife forgot to shut the door.
I've seen my GP, and a private neurologist who is sending me for a brain scan on Monday, but I don't really feel as like anyone is taking it very seriously, and I don't like it. I don't like it at all.