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Psychiatric sequelae of stroke affecting the non-dominant cerebral hemisphere

Published:September 26, 2021DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jns.2021.120007

      Highlights

      • Neuropsychiatric sequelae of non-dominant hemisphere stroke are less well known.
      • These sequelae include aprosodias and anxiety.
      • Impairments in facial emotion perception and expression and empathy.
      • Mania, apathy, psychosis, and prosopagnosia.

      Abstract

      There are a plethora of cognitive sequelae in addition to neglect and extinction that arise with unilateral right hemispheric stroke (RHS). Cognitive deficits following non-dominant (right) hemisphere stroke are common with unilateral neglect and extinction being the most recognized examples. The severity of RHS is usually underestimated by the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS), which in terms of lateralized right hemisphere cognitive deficits, tests only for visual inattention/extinction. They account for 2 out of 42 total possible points. Additional neuropsychiatric sequelae include but are not limited to deficiencies in affective prosody comprehension and production (aprosodias), understanding and expressing facial emotions, empathy, recognition of familiar faces, anxiety, mania, apathy, and psychosis. These sequelae have a profound impact on patients' quality of life; affecting communication, interpersonal relationships, and the ability to fulfill social roles. They also pose additional challenges to recovery. There is presently a gap in the literature regarding a cohesive overview of the significant cognitive sequelae following RHS. This paper serves as a narrative survey of the current understanding of the subject, with particular emphasis on neuropsychiatric poststroke syndromes not predominantly associated with left hemisphere lesions (LHL), bilateral lesions, hemiplegia, or paralysis. A more comprehensive understanding of the neuropsychological consequences of RHS extending beyond the typical associations of unilateral neglect and extinction may have important implications for clinical practice, including the ways in which clinicians approach diagnostics, treatment, and rehabilitation.

      Keywords

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