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Body ownership: When feeling and knowing diverge


Romano, D; Sedda, A; Brugger, P; Bottini, G (2015). Body ownership: When feeling and knowing diverge. Consciousness and Cognition, 34:140-148.

Abstract

Individuals with the peculiar disturbance of 'overcompleteness' experience an intense desire to amputate one of their healthy limbs, describing a sense of disownership for it (Body Integrity Identity Disorder - BIID). This condition is similar to somatoparaphrenia, the acquired delusion that one's own limb belongs to someone else. In ten individuals with BIID, we measured skin conductance response to noxious stimuli, delivered to the accepted and non-accepted limb, touching the body part or simulating the contact (stimuli approach the body without contacting it), hypothesizing that these individuals have responses like somatoparaphrenic patients, who previously showed reduced pain anticipation, when the threat was directed to the disowned limb. We found reduced anticipatory response to stimuli approaching, but not contacting, the unwanted limb. Conversely, stimuli contacting the non-accepted body-part, induced stronger SCR than those contacting the healthy parts, suggesting that feeling of ownership is critically related to a proper processing of incoming threats.

Abstract

Individuals with the peculiar disturbance of 'overcompleteness' experience an intense desire to amputate one of their healthy limbs, describing a sense of disownership for it (Body Integrity Identity Disorder - BIID). This condition is similar to somatoparaphrenia, the acquired delusion that one's own limb belongs to someone else. In ten individuals with BIID, we measured skin conductance response to noxious stimuli, delivered to the accepted and non-accepted limb, touching the body part or simulating the contact (stimuli approach the body without contacting it), hypothesizing that these individuals have responses like somatoparaphrenic patients, who previously showed reduced pain anticipation, when the threat was directed to the disowned limb. We found reduced anticipatory response to stimuli approaching, but not contacting, the unwanted limb. Conversely, stimuli contacting the non-accepted body-part, induced stronger SCR than those contacting the healthy parts, suggesting that feeling of ownership is critically related to a proper processing of incoming threats.

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2 citations in Web of Science®
4 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Neurology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:July 2015
Deposited On:11 Dec 2015 13:07
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 19:35
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:1053-8100
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.concog.2015.04.008
PubMed ID:25955181

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