Transient global amnesia: Isolated event or healthy predictor? Clinical experience of an Italian Emergency Department

  • Greta Barbieri | greta.barbieri88@gmail.com Department of Emergency Medicine, University Hospital of Pisa, Italy.
  • Alessandro Cipriano Department of Emergency Medicine, University Hospital of Pisa, Italy.
  • Simona Luly Department of Emergency Medicine, University Hospital of Pisa, Italy.
  • Viola Del Nista Department of Emergency Medicine, University Hospital of Pisa, Italy.
  • Eugenio Orsitto Department of Emergency Medicine, University Hospital of Pisa, Italy.
  • Massimo Santini Department of Emergency Medicine, University Hospital of Pisa, Italy.

Abstract

Transient global amnesia (TGA) is a clinical syndrome characterized by reversible anterograde amnesia, in which the patient is alert, self-awareness appears intact and other neurological symptoms are absent. The diagnosis is based on the following criteria: i) witnessed event; ii) acute onset of anterograde amnesia; iii) no accompanying neurological symptoms; iv) no alteration of consciousness; v) no epileptic features; vi) resolution within 24 hours; vii) exclusion of other causes. We conducted a cohort study at the Department of Emergency Medicine on 119 patients with TGA diagnosis from 2010 to 2014, with follow-up evaluation by telephone interview. The objectives of our study were to evaluate the frequency of subsequent episodes, to identify predisposing factors, and to investigate whether TGA is a possible predictor of neurological disease. The frequency of comorbidity in our population was in line with literature. We observed a recurrence rate of 9.5%, with a prevalence for the male gender, while no other factor correlates with TGA recurrence. TGA was not a predictor of further neurological diseases. In conclusion, TGA is a benign pathology with a low probability of relapse. Accordingly, management in Emergency Department should be based on a correct initial clinical classification for rapid discharge.

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Published
2019-10-25
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Original Articles
Keywords:
Amnesia, Emergency, Epilepsy, Stroke
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How to Cite
Barbieri, G., Cipriano, A., Luly, S., Del Nista, V., Orsitto, E., & Santini, M. (2019). Transient global amnesia: Isolated event or healthy predictor? Clinical experience of an Italian Emergency Department. Emergency Care Journal, 15(3). https://doi.org/10.4081/ecj.2019.8217