Distorted visual feedback effects on drawing in Parkinson's disease

Robert Fucetola, Marcia C. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


We investigated the effects of distorted visual feedback on the drawing performance of a group with Parkinson's disease (PD) and a control group. Twenty older healthy adults and 20 PD patients copied figures onto a digitizer tablet with a pen under normal and distorted visual feedback conditions. PD patients were less able than controls to adjust the size of their drawing to compensate for distortions in visual feedback. The effect was particularly pronounced when patients were required to draw smaller than normal. Nevertheless, with practice, PD patients showed a similar degree of improvement in size as controls, although they did not match the control group's level of performance. Overall, these findings support the notion that PD may have specific difficulty adjusting to a change in gain (or discrepancy) between visual and kinesthetic feedback when they must alter the size of their drawing. These findings point to the putative role of the basal ganglia in adjusting for the intermodal discrepancy between sensory feedback, and re-scaling the size of movements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)255-266
Number of pages12
JournalActa Psychologica
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 1997


  • Motor control
  • Motor learning
  • Neurological disease
  • Neuropsychology
  • Parkinson's disease


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