The heterogeneity of category-specific semantic disorders: Evidence from a new case

Cristina Rosazza, Emilia Imbornone, Marco Zorzi, Elisabetta Farina, Leonora Chiavari, Stefano F. Cappa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We report a new case of category-specific semantic impairment, affecting living entities, in a patient with traumatic brain damage. In the present investigation we attempted to replicate as closely as possible the testing procedures which have been developed by Caramazza and Shelton (1998) to evaluate EW, a patient with a selective semantic disorder for the animal category. The results in our patient indicated a different performance profile, characterised by a more extensive semantic disorder for living entities, and by a more severe loss of specific visual rather than functional knowledge. These findings concur with other evidence indicating that category-specific semantic disorders are heterogeneous, reflecting different mechanisms of impairment, most likely associated with different neurobiological underpinnings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)189-202
Number of pages14
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2003


  • Category-specific semantic impairments
  • Different mechanisms of disruption of information processing
  • Heterogeneity
  • Reductionist and non-reductionist theories
  • Task repairments

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Psychology(all)

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