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Prospective memory in normal ageing and dementia
Neurocase, 1, 285-289
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Two proposals are critically examined in this review: (i) prospective memory (remembering to remember) is spared in normal ageing, and (ii) prospective memory is particularly impaired in abnormal ageing or dementia. For normal ageing, it seems that there are circumstances in which the elderly can perform prospective memory tasks as well as the young; however, this does not necessarily indicate that prospective memory itself is unaffected by old age. It is argued that, in at least two respects, prospective memory is even more impaired in the elderly than retrospective memory. For abnormal ageing, there appears to be insufficient evidence to conclude that prospective memory is more vulnerable in the early stages of dementia than retrospective memory. Finally, some questions are raised for future research.