Clinical Neuroscience

[Multiple disruption of the body representation in neglect]

SNAGY Zita1,2,3, VERSEGHI Anna3, VKOMLÓSI Anna1, RÁKÓCZI Balázs3, BOROS Erzsébet3

JANUARY 30, 2014

Clinical Neuroscience - 2014;67(01-02)

[Background and purpose - Neglect related to the body has many symptoms. We suggest that the various symptoms might be associated with the injuries of different cognitive functions referring to the body, which are caused by lesions of different brain areas. Therefore we investigated the injuries of two functions in a group of patients with neglect (N=10) contrary to patients without neglect (N=10) and healthy controls (N=10). These functions are: perception of body location in external space and the perception of body shape. Methods - We applied a novel method (Body Portraying Method), which is suitable for measuring subjective perception of both body location and body shape. Results - 1. Patients with left neglect perceived their bodies with a significant right shift compared to their real body position. In contrast to this, patients without neglect and healthy controls tended to shift the subjective location of their body to the left. 2. Patients with neglect perceived the shape of their bodies significantly more distorted than both patients without neglect and healthy controls. 3. In case of eight patients with neglect, the symptom of shifted body location to the right and the symptom of body shape distortion appeared together. However, injuries of these two functions dissociated in case of two neglect patients. Conclusions - Both the perception of body location in external space and the perception of body shape might become distorted in neglect. Furthermore, the dissociation of these symptoms supports our suggestion, that they might be associated with the injuries of different functions referring to the body. This result has practical issues as well. At the end of the study we discuss the necessity of appropriate tailored physiotherapy (fitted to the injured function) in the rehabilitation of patients with neglect.]


  1. Institute of Psychology, Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest
  2. PhD School of Psychology, Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest
  3. National Institute for Medical Rehabilitation, Budapest



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