Gerstmann's syndrome

From Psy3242

Gerstmann's syndrome is the term given to symptoms that indicate a lesion is present in the dominat side of angular gyrus and the supramarginal gyrus (near the temporal and parietal lobes). Those suffering with this syndrome experience difficulty recognizing, naming, selecting, and differentiating parts of the body, writing, mathematics, and left from right.


The Symptoms


  • Difficulty writing
  • Writing/printing is well, but spelling and word order are often incorrect and errors are common
  • A reading impairment is not present; often knows what they have written is incorrect
  • Lesions in the Dominant Parietal Lobe


  • Lack of ability to calculate simple math
  • Lesions in the Dominate Parietal Lobe

Right-left Disorientation

  • Unable to distinguish right from left
  • Lesions in the Posterior (Back) Left (or Dominant) Hemisphere

Finger Agnosia

  • Inability to identify (by pointing or moving) a finger when told to identify one is told which one to identify
  • Lesions in the Dominant Parietal Lobe


For adults this syndrome is usually the result of a stroke or other damage to the parietal lobe. However, in the rare instance that a child was to develop this syndrome, it is unknown what would have caused it.


While there is no cure for Gerstmann's syndrome, patients usually adapt or symptoms diminish. Treatment includes strategies that help those with this disorder function in daily life. Such as occupational and speech therapies are often used to help minimize agraphia. Calculators and word processors (such as Microsoft Word) are used to help with agraphia and acalculia.

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