Phenomenological Characteristics of Future Thinking in Alzheimer's Disease

Ahmed A. Moustafa, Mohamad El Haj*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigates phenomenological reliving of future thinking in Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients and matched controls. All participants were asked to imagine in detail a future event, and afterward, were asked to rate phenomenological characteristics of their future thinking. As compared to controls, AD participants showed poor rating for reliving, travel in time, visual imagery, auditory imagery, language, and spatiotemporal specificity. However, no significant differences were observed between both groups in emotion and importance of future thinking. Results also showed lower rating for visual imagery relative to remaining phenomenological features in AD participants compared to controls; conversely, these participants showed higher ratings for emotion and importance of future thinking. AD seems to compromise some phenomenological characteristics of future thinking, especially, visual imagery; however, other phenomenological characteristics, such as emotion, seem to be relatively preserved in these populations. By highlighting the phenomenological experience of future thinking in AD, our paper opens a unique window into the conscious experience of the future in AD patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1279-1287
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Alzheimer's Disease
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes


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