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Visuospatial neglect: The ultimate deconstruction?

Halligan, Peter and Marshall, J. C. 1998. Visuospatial neglect: The ultimate deconstruction? Brain and Cognition 37 (3) , pp. 419-438. 10.1006/brcg.1998.1006

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Unilateral visuospatial neglect is now widely acknowledged to be a highly heterogeneous condition: The overt manifestations of visual neglect can vary as a function of task, spatial domain, and mode of response (at least). Double dissociations (sometimes of the strong form) have already been reported between most of the components of what was originally thought to be a relatively stable construct within the visual modality. Nonetheless, throughout successive fractionations of neglect, reported cases of bidirectional task-specific neglect after unilateral brain damage are rare. We now report two such cases. After right hemisphere stroke, the first patient reliably showed severe left neglect on cancellation but right neglect on line bisection. After left hemisphere stroke, the second case showed right neglect on cancellation but left neglect on line bisection. Extensive investigation of case 1 confirmed our previous conjecture that the crucial distinction between these tasks lies in the presence or the absence of an overt target. In contrast to cancellation, line bisection demands the internal computation of the location of the “target” (the midpoint), followed by executing a motor response toward the precise location of that “imaginary” midpoint. The relative attentional and premotor contributions of the intact and damaged hemispheres to these forms of bidirectional neglect are also assessed.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0278-2626
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:14

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