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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Temporary Memory Steal: Transient Global Amnesia Secondary to Nephrolithiasis

  • Author(s): Durrani, Muhammad
  • Milas, Jerry
  • Parson, Gregory
  • Pescatore, Richard
  • et al.

Transient global amnesia (TGA) is typified by an abrupt and transient anterograde amnesia, “with repetitive questioning and often variable retrograde amnesia persisting up to 24 hours.”1,2 A 54-year-old male presented to our emergency department with paroxysms of left-sided flank pain, suggestive of renal colic. Computed tomography (CT) of the abdomen/pelvis revealed a three-millimeter left ureterovesicular-junction calculus. Pain control proved difficult, necessitating multiple doses of opioid and non-opioid analgesia. Subsequently, the patient developed repetitive questioning and perseveration with anterograde amnesia with a negative CT brain and unremarkable further workup. He experienced a complete resolution of symptoms within a 24-hour period, with a discharge diagnosis of TGA secondary to nephrolithiasis. This is the third case of TGA attributed to nephrolithiasis in the medical literature.

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