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May 1960

Figure-Ground Discrimination After Induced Altered Brain Function

Author Affiliations

Glen Oaks, New York
From The Department of Experimental Psychiatry, Hillside Hospital.

AMA Arch Neurol. 1960;2(5):547-551. doi:10.1001/archneur.1960.03840110061007

Studies of complex visual perception with altered brain function in man have not always yielded clear or consistent results. The disagreements may be due to many factors, such as differences in population studied, types of procedures employed, and difficulties in evaluating the degree of alteration in brain function. Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), however, provides a unique opportunity for studying the effects of cerebral dysfunction in that more accurate control can be maintained over the degree of induced cerebral dysfunction and its measurement.

While most investigations of brain-injured populations have focused on the role of the locus of the lesion on behavior, current studies of ECT have emphasized individual differences. Marked variability has been shown for perceptual,12 behavorial,7 and physiologic5,8 responses to ECT. Various personality6,11 and social factors9,10 have also been related to differences in response to treatment.

In the course of an investigation of the perceptual

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