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    Tactile confusions of the fingers and toes

    Manser-Smith, K. and Tamè, Luigi and Longo, Matthew R. (2018) Tactile confusions of the fingers and toes. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance , ISSN 0096-1523. (In Press)

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    Recent research has shown systematic patterns of confusions between digits of the hands and feet. The present study addressed whether such confusions arise from early somatosensory maps or higher-level body representations. As the glabrous and hairy skin of the hands and feet have distinct representations in somatosensory cortex, an effect arising from early somatotopic maps may show distinct patterns on each skin surface. In contrast, if the effect arises from higher-level body representations which represent the digits as volumetric units, similar patterns should be apparent regardless of which side of the digit is touched. We obtained confusion matrices showing the pattern of mislocalisation on the glabrous and hairy skin surfaces of the toes (Experiment 1) and fingers (Experiment 2). Our results replicated the characteristic pattern of mislocalisations found on the glabrous skin reported in previous studies. Critically, these effects were highly similar on the hairy skin surface of both the toes and fingers. Despite the pattern of mislocalisations being highly stereotyped across participants, there were consistent individual differences in the pattern of confusions across the two skin surfaces. These results suggest that mislocalisations occur at the level of individual digits, consistent with their resulting from higher-level body representations.


    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: ©American Psychological Association 201x. This paper is not the copy of record and may not exactly replicate the authoritative document published in the APA journal. Please do not copy or cite without author's permission. The final article is available, upon publication, at the DOI cited above.
    School: School of Science > Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Matthew Longo
    Date Deposited: 17 May 2018 07:34
    Last Modified: 10 Feb 2021 21:57


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