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ERIC Number: EJ1006669
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Mar
Pages: 7
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0010-0277
Seeing the Body Distorts Tactile Size Perception
Longo, Matthew R.; Sadibolova, Renata
Cognition, v126 n3 p475-481 Mar 2013
Vision of the body modulates somatosensation, even when entirely non-informative about stimulation. For example, seeing the body increases tactile spatial acuity, but reduces acute pain. While previous results demonstrate that vision of the body modulates somatosensory sensitivity, it is unknown whether vision also affects metric properties of touch, and if so how. This study investigated how non-informative vision of the body modulates tactile size perception. We used the mirror box illusion to induce the illusion that participants were directly seeing their stimulated left hand, though they actually saw their reflected right hand. We manipulated whether participants: (a) had the illusion of directly seeing their stimulated left hand, (b) had the illusion of seeing a non-body object at the same location, or (c) looked directly at their non-stimulated right-hand. Participants made verbal estimates of the perceived distance between two tactile stimuli presented simultaneously to the dorsum of the left hand, either 20, 30, or 40 mm apart. Vision of the body significantly reduced the perceived size of touch, compared to vision of the object or of the contralateral hand. In contrast, no apparent changes of perceived hand size were found. These results show that seeing the body distorts tactile size perception. (Contains 5 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A