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Visual memory recall problems

Messages
4
Hi all,

I've had ME 5 years and a new symptom has developed regarding my memory. My visual memory recall is declining and I was wondering if anyone has come across this in their research and reading or experienced it themselves?

Last week my visual recall became cloudy when I closed my eyes to rest and sleep. I could catch a memory for a moment butnitnwoiod cloud over or the memory would appear for a couple of moments but in a sort of hologram form as an image with static. In addition my imagination isn't firing like it used to.

I can still think about things just not see them in my mind properly.

This came about after I'd neurologically overdone it reading and was experiencing headaches. It's also been accomplished by extreme light sensitivity and a sharp increase in my level of physical fatigue.

I was wondering if anyone has come across this in their research and reading or experienced it themselves? (I have a gp appt next week).


Thank you for your time

Lee
 

Wolfcub

Senior Member
Messages
7,089
Location
SW UK
@leew ....like thoughts are two-dimensional instead of being able to visualise with imagination involved? Like looking at still black-and-white shots in your mind (metaphorically)?

If so, then yes that happens to me.

I am a very heart-centered person, and find this phenomenon hard at times. To recall a loved one's face....someone like my mother who has passed, or my husband etc. And suddenly I can see them in my mind's eye but my imagination refuses to interact, and they have no "life" in my thoughts.

Now oddly that upsets me more than many things.

The only thing I can offer you (no science I'm afraid) -is that sometimes that lifts, for me anyway, for short periods.

I have begun to think it is related to an absolute and utter, down-to-my-boots exhaustion, where there really isn't the energy available for it, and the energy available is for immediate survival only. So that part of the system shuts down temporarily as it isn't on the front line for survival.
 
Messages
4
Thank you for your reply wolfcub. It's some comfort to know I'm not the only one experiencing this type of thing.

I totally understand what you mean by two-dimensional thinking where the "life" has been taken out of memories. I find it quite upsetting and disturbing. I too am very heart centred, not being able to recall important people and events is hard. I see things in a glimpse in a literal foggy haze before they disappear.

I also find it perhaps the most distressing symptom I've experienced.

My initial thoughts are the same as yours, that it's to do with some deep, deep level of exhaustion. After a year in the severe group and 6 months progressing slowly I'd hit a 2 month upswing where my health had been improving quicker in more ways. Then new headaches surfaced and I went from believing I was "in recovery" to being in a 99% bed bound state again within 5 days. After a week of being unable to think coherently the memory recall and imagination issues started.

Thank you for telling me that in your case it lifts. It gives me some hope.
 

alex3619

Senior Member
Messages
13,810
Location
Logan, Queensland, Australia
My visual memory recall is declining and I was wondering if anyone has come across this in their research and reading or experienced it themselves?
Its one of my major problems. Its now so bad I am in amnesia territory. However I call this episodic memory, as distinct from semantic memory. Semantic memory is ideas, episodic is specific events. I just cannot visualise 99.99% of my life now, but I know a lot of the facts about my life. I have been sick for many decades though, maybe 50 years, so this took time, and its hard to be sure what amount is due to ageing.

One technical term for it is episodic partial amnesia, but there is almost no research into this.
 
Messages
4
Thank you for explaining the different types of memory, I didn't know about them.
What you've said closely relates to my experience where I know everything about me but can't visualise it other than in very grainy footage for an instant. There's a lot of darkness and a mist/fog implanted over where my memories used to be/sometimes emerge.

I was wondering if you'd ever experienced anything like it while dreaming? A few times as I've been awakening and my dream is taking place a cloud of static like on an old analogue to has come down over it and I can't see it anymore.

I'm sorry to here you've been sick for so long.
 

Moof

Senior Member
Messages
778
Location
UK
I experience the same, but I've never been sure how much it's complicated by my autism spectrum disorder. People with ASDs often have different skills when it comes to processing visual memories, with some having highly enhanced abilities and others unusually poor ones.

I completely understand what you mean about black-and-white recall, @Wolfcub, as I literally 'see' memories in black-and-white now. I can't remember whether this was always the case, but I don't think it was. I've been ill for more than 40 years, though, and it's hard to remember much about life without ME!
 

alex3619

Senior Member
Messages
13,810
Location
Logan, Queensland, Australia
I've had ME 5 years
What you've said closely relates to my experience where I know everything about me but can't visualise it other than in very grainy footage for an instant.
I have said many times I see this in patients after 3 years sometimes, and after 10 years a lot It seems to be a at least in part a consequence of duration of illness. Unless I am confusing it with something else I see at that time. Suddenly I am less sure, but then I am overdue to get some sleep.