Patients with unilateral brain lesions were given a task requiring exploration of space with the hand in order to assess the visual dependency of unilateral spatial neglect. The task was carried out both without visual control and under visual control. Performances were compared with that of normal subjects. Results were :(1) patients with right brain damage with no visual field defect demonstrated left-sided neglect only when the exploration was not controlled visually; (2) patients with left and right brain damage with visual field defect demonstrated contralateral neglect only when the exploration was under visual guidance. The performance of the patients with right brain damage without visual field defect in not clearly understood. The other results suggest that inner spatial representation remains intact in most cases of spatial neglect. The role of parietal lobe damage in the development of this visually induced phenomenon is hypothesised. The dominant position of vision among the senses is indicated.
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