Actor Brad Pitt has revealed that he suffers from a condition called prosopagnosia . At 58, he said he feels ashamed when he can’t recognize someone’s face, which is exactly the meaning of the condition the artist faces.
The star even believes that people can see him as “egocentric, distracted and inaccessible”. In an interview with GQ, the Oscar winner stated that he would like to meet more people with this disease. “Nobody believes me! I want to meet others,” he said, who has not received an official diagnosis — which must be made by a doctor or a neuropsychologist.
Prosopagnosia is not the same as memory loss
According to the neurologists consulted by VivaBem , it is important to explain that the health problem is considered a neurological symptom.
The condition can occur as a result of several other illnesses, such as a stroke (stroke) or Alzheimer’s , as well as situations such as head trauma or after brain surgery. “Prosopagnosia is characterized by the difficulty in recognizing people’s faces.
The patient is no longer able to differentiate one person from another, even though they are familiar with them”, explains Leonel Takada, a neurologist at Hospital das Clínicas de São Paulo and a member of the ABN (Academia Brazilian Society of Neurology).
This condition — popularly known as “face blindness” — is not the same as forgetting the name of someone you happen to meet on the street.
“Prosopagnosia is different from memory alterations themselves”, says Thiago Taya, neurologist and neuroimmunologist at Hospital Brasília (DF).
“This patient looks at a familiar person and does not recognize his face, his anatomical features. It could be his wife, father or a friend”, explains the doctor.
And this is random, according to Takada: “One can forget only a few people. There is no pattern.” In addition, he explains that this patient may not recognize his father at a given moment, but the next day, for example, he already recognizes him
Is there any way to treat it?
It depends, as the treatment varies according to the cause. However, there is no remedy to “cure” the problem.
It is possible to carry out neuropsychological rehabilitation or, then, create strategies that help the patient to recognize the person, either by the voice, smell or with the environment itself (if he knows he is at home, then he can relate the place with the people present in him).
Brad says that, at times, he makes use of this strategy. “Every now and then someone gives me context and I say, ‘Thanks for helping me,'” the actor said.