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Imagery and spatial processes in blindness and visual impairment

Cattaneo, Zaira and Vecchi, Tomaso and Cornoldi, Cesare and Mammarella, Irene and Bonino, Daniela and Ricciardi, Emiliano and Pietrini, Pietro Imagery and spatial processes in blindness and visual impairment. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 32 (8). 1346 - 1360. ISSN 0149-7634 (2008)

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The objective of this review is to examine and evaluate recent findings on cognitive functioning (in particular imagery processes) in individuals with congenital visual impairments, including total blindness, low-vision and monocular vision. As one might expect, the performance of blind individuals in many behaviours and tasks requiring imagery can be inferior to that of sighted subjects; however, surprisingly often this is not the case. Interestingly, there is evidence that the blind often employ different cognitive mechanisms than sighted subjects, suggesting that compensatory mechanisms can overcome the limitations of sight loss. Taken together, these studies suggest that the nature of perceptual input on which we commonly rely strongly affects the organization of our mental processes. We also review recent neuroimaging studies on the neural correlates of sensory perception and mental imagery in visually impaired individuals that have cast light on the plastic functional reorganization mechanisms associated with visual deprivation.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2008.05.002
Additional Information: Special section: The European Workshop in Imagery and Cognition: Neurocognition and Visual Imagery
Uncontrolled Keywords: Imagery; Visuo-spatial processes; Supramodal processes; Blindness; Visual impairments
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Research Area: Computer Science and Applications
Depositing User: Caterina Tangheroni
Date Deposited: 19 Feb 2016 13:01
Last Modified: 13 Sep 2016 09:59
URI: http://eprints.imtlucca.it/id/eprint/3094

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