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Revista Colombiana de Psicología

Print version ISSN 0121-5469


SANCHEZ TOMBE, JOSÉ RAUL. Lesions in the Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex and their Impact on Social Cognition. Rev. colomb. psicol. [online]. 2022, vol.31, n.2, pp.11-26.  Epub Oct 03, 2022. ISSN 0121-5469.


To identify the impact of ventromedial prefrontal cortex injury (vmPFc) on social cognition (SC) processes in a stroke patient in relation to a control group matched by age, gender, and schooling. Possible associations between post-injury behavior and impacted neuropsychological attributes of emotion recognition, Theory of Mind (TOM), and empathy are discussed.


One male patient (n = 1) (58 years old) with stroke in right vmpFC and 10 healthy participants completed different screening, neuropsychological assessment, and SC tests as: Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination-Revised; The Trail Making Test; Raven's Matrices; Faux Pas Test; Reading Mind in the Eyes Test, among others.


Due single cases are reported, p< .05 values of a tail were considered statistically significant in all comparisons. Correlations were found between damage in vmPFC and alterations in affective TOM, working and retrograde memory, mood and relational alterations in the patient. Discrepancies were found with respect to other studies in relation to the laterality of the injury and the impact of cognitive and affective empathy that seems to be relatively intact.


There is a need to clarify the role of affective TOM after acquired brain injury (ABI) in vmPFC. A protocol is needed to assess and intervene in aspects of TOM that would involve documenting strengths and deficits of TOM: inter and intrapersonal after an ABI. Similarly, there is a need to address the lateralization of different domains of function in vmPFC and their relationship to affective TOM.

Keywords : social cognition; stroke; theory of mind; ventromedial prefrontal cortex.

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