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The Word of the Day comes again from THE RETURNS by Philip Salom.


NOUN psychiatry

  1. a neurological condition characterized by the inability to recognize the faces of familiar people.

ORIGIN 1950s: modern Latin, from Greekprosōpon‘face’ + agnōsia‘ignorance’.

What causes prosopagnosia?

There are 2 types of prosopagnosia:

  • developmental prosopagnosia – where a person has prosopagnosia without having brain damage

  • acquired prosopagnosia – where a person develops prosopagnosia after brain damage, often following a stroke or head injury

In the past, most cases of prosopagnosia were thought to occur after a brain injury (acquired prosopagnosia).

But research has found that many more people have prosopagnosia without having brain damage (developmental prosopagnosia) than was first thought.

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