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Is grasping impaired in hemispatial neglect ?

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Patients with right unilateral cerebral stroke, four of which showed acute hemispatial neglect, and healthy aged-matched controls were tested for their ability to grasp objects located in either right or left space at near or far distances. Reaches were performed either in free vision or without visual feedback from the hand or target object. It was found that the patient group showed normal grasp kinematics with respect to maximum grip aperture, grip orientation, and the time taken to reach the maximum grip aperture. Analysis of hand path curvature showed that control subjects produced straighter right hand reaches when vision was available compared to when it was not. The right hemisphere lesioned patients, however, showed similar levels of curvature in each of these conditions. No behavioural differences, though, could be found between right hemisphere lesioned patients with or without hemispatial neglect on either grasp parameters, path deviation or temporal kinematics.

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