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Case of transient global amnesia-like syndrome after recreational cold-water swimming
  1. Ruby Ffrench1,
  2. Matthew D Smith1,2 and
  3. Emily Henderson1,2
  1. 1Older people's unit, Royal United Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Bath, UK
  2. 2Population Health Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Matthew D Smith; matthew.smith{at}


We document a case of a transient global amnesia (TGA)-like syndrome following open water swimming. This case was atypical for TGA, in that symptoms were prolonged and ischaemic infarct was considered within the differential. MRI did not demonstrate any changes associated with acute ischaemia although did show a mild degree of small vessel change. With amnesia taking greater than 24 hours to resolve, we have labelled this case to be a TGA-like syndrome, provoked by the commonly reported TGA precipitant of cold water immersion. The possibility of a tiny, strategic infarct causing these symptoms was considered and antiplatelet therapy commenced.

  • Memory Disorders
  • Stroke
  • Exposures
  • Sports and exercise medicine
  • Accidents, injuries

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  • Contributors RF drafted the manuscript and lead the writing of this case report. MMS provided further drafting of the manuscript. EH reviewed the manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.

  • Competing interests EH: Grants: National Institute of Health Research Health Technology Assessment Grant; Elizabeth Blackwell Institute Health Data Strand; Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC); Robotics and Everyday Life Award; Research for Patient Benefit (RfPB) Programme; Alzheimer’s UK Pump Priming Award. British Geriatrics Society; The Gatsby Foundation. Consulting and Honoraria: Kyowa Kirin; Abbvie; Luye; Medicys. Meetings and travel: Ever; Bial; Abbvie. Advisory boards: Kyowa Kirin; Bial; Abbvie. Commercial: Xeropoint. MMS: Honoraria: teaching provided on behalf of AbbVie. RF: none.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.