What are the different types of tonsil damage?

Located in the limbic system of the brain, the amygdala is a brain structure involved in the processing of emotional stimuli, as well as their memorization. Damage to the amygdala can have a number of different effects, including the inability to create or execute fear responses to specific stimuli. Effects may also include low expressions of maternal behavior. Risky behaviors such as low-odds gambling may also increase after damage to this area of ​​the brain.

Normally, the amygdala helps the brain encode and express fear responses. After exposure to threatening stimuli, the brain memorizes these conditions and a reappearance of the stimulus will cause a fear reaction. Some damage to the amygdala will extinguish this response entirely. An individual with this damage will not associate fear responses with stimuli. Previously acquired fear responses will also not be expressed in the presence of stimuli.

Emotions other than fear are mediated in this area. In monkey studies, damage to the amygdala caused mothers to stop displaying maternal behavior. Instead, the mothers attacked or abused their babies, in some cases. Lesions of the entire amygdala on both sides of the brain led to Kluver-Bucy syndrome in monkeys. This disorder causes a lack of aggression and fear, as well as inappropriate sexual behavior.

Helping people recognize emotions is another function that can be affected by damage. People who had amygdala damage on both sides of the brain were unable to recognize emotions related to facial expressions. Sometimes they even mistook angry expressions for smiles. When these individuals were shown emotional expressions without faces, they were able to recognize the displayed emotion. This result shows that the brain has other centers that help people recognize emotions.

Loss aversion is a term that describes the avoidance of taking risks, especially when these risks would not result in significant gain. Amygdala damage in humans created an inability to practice loss aversion. These people tended to take big risks in gambling, even when they didn't make a lot of money by winning. Risk taking that did not have the potential for the individual to lose something was not affected.

Sensing other people in personal space is another function of the amygdala that can be affected. When the amygdala is damaged on both sides of the brain, people don't react to others in their personal space. This effect may be due to people not differentiating between standing right next to someone and being some distance away from them.

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