Royal Society Publishing

Auditory Agnosia

L. A. Vignolo

Abstract

Auditory agnosia can be defined as the defective recognition of non-verbal sounds and noises. The clinical picture of this disorder is described and the scarcity of knowledge of auditory agnosia derived purely from single cases is discussed. Next, experimental studies on unselected series of brain-damaged patients, especially designed to clarify the relation of auditory agnosia to aphasia and to the hemispheric locus of the lesion are reported. The results consistently point to the existence of two types of auditory agnosia, a semantic-associative one, specifically associated with lesions of the left hemisphere and aphasia, and a discriminative one, specifically associated with lesions of the right hemisphere. The hypothesis is advanced that the semantic-associative variety of auditory agnosia is part of a wider cognitive disorder.

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