Clinical neuropsychologist Aarón Del Olmo answers questions about his brain lecture last March in #YoMeQuedoEnCasa learning with #NeuronUPAcademy from NeuronUP
Questions from Aarón Del Olmo’s brain presentation
Diana Baez: In terms of perception, specifically TEL and dyslexia will be shared deficits?
Many times we would have situations where a language problem would be the basis for a later reading problem, of course. Sometimes a hearing problem generates a language problem and by extension a reading problem. That is to say, sometimes they can have a similar basis. Other times, they do not.
2. Julen Chato Noriega: Can there be a relationship between synaesthesia and sensory deprivation?
As far as I know, in principle no, synaesthesia should not occur due to sensory deprivation, although sometimes it produces perceptive experiences due to the activation of the brain, as happens with disaffection, but there would not be a direct relationship. It is true that the brain never knows how it will compensate when something fails, but it would not be something yet demonstrated.
3. Selene Vicario Domínguez: “Is continuing to activate the brain without stimulation also a way of avoiding aberrant neuroplasticity of nearby areas?”
How this interferes with neuroplasticity and reconfiguration after damage is a bit of a mystery, but the truth is that after deafferentation many times those areas of the brain that no longer receive stimulation seem to begin to progressively participate in other processes. Probably when they are no longer automatically activated.
4. Marta Bort Fernandez: “What about perceptual errors? Would that be the basis for hallucinations in psychotic disorders, for example?”
That’s an interesting question. The first thing I would ask myself is if all hallucinations in psychotic disorders have the same origin or function the same. It’s quite likely that there are different mechanisms at the brain level, and also different histories and contexts at the life level. It’s hard to think that perceptual errors alone are the basis, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t something similar, based on the fact that the brain tries to explain everything that happens, both perceptively and cognitively.
5. Valeria Patti Gelabert: Is prediction associated with social cognition?
If there’s something that’s difficult to predict, it’s what other people will do, or what they will think. We have mechanisms of prediction, or rapid decision making (seeing a face, hearing the tone of voice, gives us clues that it’s going through the head of the person in front of us). In general, social life also has its predictive point, and sometimes it is even the basis of a prejudice.
6. Rosa Sánchez Prieto: In cases of the autism spectrum where there is a sensory disturbance, how can you train in an internal model configuration that will help you adapt?
Well, that internal model is formed all over the world, with the idea of being able to use it to predict. The point is that in the case of autism, where we seem to have a problem at the level of social cognition (we may have a problem in considering that other minds exist and are different from your own) it is difficult to make that prediction, since it is not conceived correctly. I think that when we do cognitive stimulation, we are working on generating that internal model.
7. Ana Zabay Neiro: In the case of autistic children, the interpretation of information that “does not fit”
In a way, the prediction is based on what we have. The development of abstraction is difficult in children with ASD, they are quite concrete and literal, and of course, their way of predicting, or balancing things when information is missing goes in that direction.
8. Silvia Vallve Bellido: In a brain with an intellectual deficit like you think perception is? Thank you.
Starting from the fact that intellectual deficit is something very broad, it is key to understand that the way of understanding and processing the world can be very different. It is almost the same from one person to another, let’s imagine when something fails, that it must be compensated in very different ways. When we have children with brain damage in front of us, it is important to consider how that brain is organizing itself to respond to the demands of the environment.
9. María Herencia: Are agnosias perception failures?
By definition yes, but we must remember that agnosia means not to recognize, and of course, sometimes there are problems in the recognition of forms of words for example that are not purely perceptive.
10. Sandra Tavira Zarco: Can synaesthesia be worked on? How?
In itself, it is not a problem to work on, and in fact it would be like trying to work on the opposite, to provoke it. Could you make someone synaesthetic with some treatment?
More questions about the brain presentation
11. Elisabeth García Alonso: What do you think of the phenomenon of heminegligence? Does the person really not see?
Heminegligence has been indicated many times as an attention problem (not attending to a part of the visual field), but on the other hand it would be a problem of recognition of the existence of that field. The person really does not see, then there is the point that he does not recognize that he does not see, which is something else.
12. Teresa Huelmo Garcia: In the cognitive impairment that affects language, what needs to be worked on so that they perceive words and their meaning better?
It depends on the difficulties, but many times, if we go to the meaning, a key is to associate words with images or synonyms to reinforce that meaning.
13. Ruth López Menchero: In meditation can you also “jump” those sensations that occur with the deprivation of sensations?
In theory it does not reach the extreme of a deprivation as such, in sensory deprivation it takes hours to produce that effect and, as I indicated, it was an extreme deprivation.
14. Sara Daoudi: What about this perception in adults with language impairment after a stroke?
Many things can happen, because it depends on the type, location, and severity of the stroke, but it is not uncommon for language problems to be accompanied by problems in right-side tactile perception (besides mobility) and difficulties with one’s perception of body schema.
15. Pepa Piqueras Landete: A TEL with many problems of organization of expression and difficulties to communicate, how can you work?
This is a broad question, which would identify where the problem comes from, whether it is in the grammar itself or more of an executive nature in how it is organized.
16. María Dolores López Cantarero: In the case of people with dementia, are the comprehension problems due to a lack of automatism?
Not necessarily, but it is possible that many times there is a semantic erasure and the meaning of the words is not recognized, and therefore that would affect the understanding.
17. Adán Espino: When you speak of perception, do you include proprioception?
Yes, of course, it is another type of perception, which sometimes seems to be covered by vision, but it is always there.
18. Sergio Reina Rodríguez: What is the relationship between the default network and sensory predictions? Would this explain the hyperactivity of the default network in patients with schizophrenia?
The default network, by all accounts, seems to play a role in relating our past knowledge and making future predictions (at least that is what Koziol indicates in his series of articles). It would be a sort of network that is activated when we are not doing something concrete, and it is usually in contrast to the frontal parietal network that precisely takes over the control for the accomplishment of a task in progress. Surely the failure of synchronization between these networks can be behind many alterations or be a small part in explaining how certain disorders work.
19. Brenda Nadia Chino Vilca: In the case of neurodegenerative diseases, how does brain reorganization work?
The reorganization is very variable, it depends on many factors, usually the cognitive reserve that each person has, for example. Sometimes it is said that the activity is bilateralised (HAROLD model) or that it becomes more frontal (PASA model).
20. Jorge Romero Castillo: Is synaesthesia also mediated by experience? That is to say, when associating a sound and a color, do all people with synaesthesia do it the same way? Does each person associate a color to a sound based on his or her experience?
Synaesthesia is precisely the opposite. It is not something experiential, it is something automatic and synchronized at the time of perceiving, but because (at least this is what Ramachandran indicates) both modalities are activated simultaneously. A learning would not be a synesthesia.
21. Sandra Obispo Legazpe: “Any book on perception or any topic you have talked about but focused on children?”
Specific to Children it is more difficult to find manuals on purely perceptive aspects, but any manual on child neuropsychology is going to have at least one chapter
22. Felipe Gutiérrez and Manuel Bejarano Guisado: How can we distinguish between an attention deficit and a perception deficit?
By dissociating tests, making an exploration with purely perceptive tests, checking if attention fails in all the tests or only (or more) in the perceptive ones.
If you liked this entry about the answers to the doubts of Aarón Del Olmo’s brain lecture, you are probably interested in more lectures of #YoMeQuedoEnCasa learning with #NeuronUPAcademy. You can find them in this link
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