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October 1962

Perception of Body Size in Schizophrenia

Author Affiliations

VA Hospital (Drs. Cleveland and Rothaus); Upstate Medical Center, Syracuse, N.Y. (Dr. Fisher); University of Houston (Mr. Reitman).

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1962;7(4):277-285. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1962.01720040043004

In an earlier preliminary study, Cleveland1 found that schizophrenics overestimate body size when making size judgments from photographs of body parts. Moreover, schizophrenics exceeded a hospital control group in size estimates made from photographs of such body parts as a heart and stomach, as well as a hand and foot. Yet on a neutral, nonbody object such as a photographed baseball, schizophrenics neither overestimated the actual baseball size nor did they significantly exceed the controls in judging the size of a baseball.

This exploratory study involved only 30 schizophrenics and 30 nonpsychotic hospital controls. Size evaluations were restricted to estimates from photograph series of a hand, foot, heart, stomach, and a baseball. A more comprehensive study was undertaken to check on these exploratory findings as well as to extend the area of investigation of body size perception in schizophrenia to different aspects of size,

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