Phineas Gage, Biological Changes Altering Psychology - Case Study Example

Comments (0) Cite this document
Biological Impact on Psychology Most psychologists are aware of the biological impact of physiology on the normal and abnormal functioning of human behavior. Both are intertwined as to the effect that they both can affect one another. There have been many cases, which experiments and accidents have occurred which have modified the behavior that have been researched by psychologists and scientists alike…
Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER97.7% of users find it useful
Phineas Gage, Biological Changes Altering Psychology
Read TextPreview

Extract of sample "Phineas Gage, Biological Changes Altering Psychology"

Biological Impact on Psychology Most psychologists are aware of the biological impact of physiology on the normal and abnormal functioning of human behavior. Both are intertwined as to the effect that they both can affect one another. There have been many cases, which experiments and accidents have occurred which have modified the behavior that have been researched by psychologists and scientists alike. One of these cases is a well-known case, which is studied in many introductory psychology classes called Phineas Gauge. Phineas Gauge was a railroad worker who lived during the 19th century. In an incident on working on the railroad, an explosive detonated unexpectedly, sending a metal rod flying through the air. This metal rod impaled Gauge through the head, destroying a majority of the left of his prefrontal lobe. After many months of recovery, Gauge had gained back a majority of his motor functions and ability to perform tasks. However, many people noticed a personality change as well as a host of other cognitive functions. The incident involving Phineas Gauge was important because it showed psychologists and scientists the impact of biology on the human psychology. It also showed that damage or changes done to the brain and other vital neurological structures had the power to change aspects such as personality and cognitive abilities (Huffman, 2009). In today’s society where the threat of injury is behind every corner, whether it be in a military zone or on the highway, it has become important for medical professionals to learn how to deal with cases in which there are brain injuries and there is a resulting psychological change. This then becomes necessary to treat the physiological as well as psychological components. Since the case of Phineas Gauge, medical practitioners have started to recognize the important of understanding how traumatic brain injury causes resulting psychological abnormalities which can range anywhere from depression to mania. In particular, damage to the prefrontal cortex in the frontal lobe has been the main site of investigation. The prefrontal cortex contains the executive functions of the brain meaning that it is in charge of allocating resources to every part of the brain. It has also been shown to have an important role in the functioning of emotional control. In this experiment, twenty-five participants suffering from traumatic brain injury were screened individually using a behavioral inventory to determine patterns in cognitive function specifically dealing with the frontal lobe. The hypothesis was that in accordance with past studies, such as with Phineas Gauge, that in individuals with traumatic brain injury that they would display deviations in behavior and the ability to control executive functioning due to the damage in that area caused by a traumatic incident, which was proven, using a CT. The statistical analysis showed that there was executive control impairment, but only certain aspects of the executive control were affected. As a result, it was again shown like the case of Phineas Gauge that changes in the neuroanatomy has the potential to affect other psychological functions (Rochat, et Al., 2009). The aspect as far as understanding the biological functioning and neurology behind the psychological behavior and thought processes is extremely important. Psychologists know that the brain is the place where all thought processes occur, many of which are organic. Thus, if there is impairment in the physiology, there will be some resulting effect in the psychological processing. The applicability of this research can extend across all domains. In cases where there is head trauma, this research can be used as to better understand the mechanics of the brain so that surgical or medical procedures can be created in order to combat the physiological and psychological illnesses. In addition, there are many different psychological disorders that can be studied by looking those effects of brain damage. Thus, this may provide a model by which other psychological disorders can be studied. References Huffman, K. (2009). Psychology in action. New York, NY: Wiley. Rochat, L., Ammann, J., Mayer, E., Annoni, J., & Van der Linden, M. (2009). Executive disorders and perceived socio-emotional changes after traumatic brain injury. Journal of Neuropsychology, 3(2), 213-227. doi:10.1348/174866408X397656 Read More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
(“Phineas Gage, Biological Changes Altering Psychology Case Study”, n.d.)
Retrieved from
(Phineas Gage, Biological Changes Altering Psychology Case Study)
“Phineas Gage, Biological Changes Altering Psychology Case Study”, n.d.
  • Cited: 1 times
Comments (0)
Click to create a comment or rate a document

CHECK THESE SAMPLES OF Phineas Gage, Biological Changes Altering Psychology

Biological psychology

...? Biological psychology Response to Question Part a. The means and standard deviations of the Racropride binding for the eight participants before and after rTMS which denotes the concentration of dopamine is the independent variable while the two structures i.e. the caudate nucleus and the putamen are the dependent variables. This implies plotting the type of structure against the means and standard deviations of the Racropride binding for the eight participants. Part b. The study design is the within participant study. This is because the same eight participants were used in each group. In this case, the eight participants were used in the before and after the repetitive Transcranial Magnetic...
10 Pages(2500 words)Essay

Phineas Gage

...). There are different types of cognitive functions. Memory and learning are examples of cognitive functions of the brain. Problem solving, perception and movement of various body parts are examples of cognitive functions. Learning of new activities and words, reading and speaking often get coordinated by the brain. These functions differentiate the human beings from other species. Theses cognitive functions originate from the cerebrum part of the brain. The cerebrum comprises of the temporal lobes, frontal lobes, occipital lobes and the parietal lobes. These areas of the cerebrum have different functions (Macmillian, 2002). The Phineas Gage accident clearly explained the functions of the brain in the...
3 Pages(750 words)Research Paper

Trading in prophet Mohammed age

3 Pages(750 words)Essay

Biological Psychology

...?Brain Mapping The biological basis of thought has often been a source of interest to scientists since a long time. Currently, such an understanding has been possible through brain mapping. Advances in brain mapping have contributed to understanding of several psychological, surgical and anatomical problems in the brain, thus providing clues for improved management and prediction of treatment outcomes. Functional magnetic resonance imaging, a recent technology in magnetic resonance imaging has been an immense tool in understanding the functional areas of brain. This essay throws insight into methods of brain mapping and the process of development of brain mapping that has been core to the understanding of...
6 Pages(1500 words)Essay

Phineas Gage valid are necessary for maintaining the intellectual integrity of the field. Phrenologists have even made use of the Gage skull, citing his mental changes as the product of the destruction of certain organs related to “veneration” (Sizer, 1888, pp. 193-194). This suggests by itself the usefulness of the Gage case not in advancing psychology as such, but rather the individual interests of those who wish to conform the facts to their theories. Phineas Gage is a fascinating case study in the history of psychology and provides a good framework for analyzing the neurological roles of brain structures. By examining a...
5 Pages(1250 words)Research Paper

C task1 eval

4 Pages(1000 words)Essay

Phineas Gage Paper

..., is affected by damages on that side of the brain and in the accident of Gage, the accident destroyed the left side of the brain, his personality, is reported to have changed where he became uncontrollable, unruly, he was controlling and even molested the children that he came across. A psychologist described the character of Phineas Gage as the differentiating ability to set aside his human intelligence and animal behaviour was destroyed, he was fitful and indulged in profanities, which had not been his behaviour prior to the accident. He would not listen to advise from his peer or employers especially when it did not coincide with his desires that came first in his...
3 Pages(750 words)Essay

Biological psychology] Biological Psychology Biological psychology, defined Biological psychology (often shortened to biopsychology) is the scientific study of the biological bases of behavior and mental states. (Biopsychology, 2006). Many researchers use the terms biological psychology and neuroscience interchangeably because both study the nervous system often using the same techniques (such as Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) and Magneto encephalography (MEG). Biological psychology is also known as biopsychology, psychobiology, physiological...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

Biological Psychology

...Biological Psychology Core assumptions of the bio psychological approach The core underlying assumption is that mental and biological processes are directly connected to each other (Kalat, 2007). Some people believe that mental processes are because of biology although bio psychologists believe that the two processes cannot be separated. Therefore, it is impossible to separate biological and mental processes. What historical disciplines converge to create biological psychology? There are various historical disciplines that converge to create biological psychology but the underlying...
1 Pages(250 words)Research Paper

Social Psychology versus Biological Psychology

...analysis (Reicher & Haslam, 2006). These are much less common in social psychology, but are, at times, used when first researching a phenomenon (Gazzaniga, 2010). An instance would be to inconspicuously watch children on a playground plus record the number and forms of aggressive behaviour displayed (Chow et al., 2010). Biological Psychology The distinguishing trait of a biological psychology experiment is that either the sovereign variable of the research is biological, or a dependent variable is biological. In simple terms, the nervous system of the being under study is temporarily or permanently...
5 Pages(1250 words)Term Paper
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.

Let us find you another Case Study on topic Phineas Gage, Biological Changes Altering Psychology for FREE!

Contact Us