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Nature. 2002 Sep 19;419(6904):269-70.

Stimulating illusory own-body perceptions.

Author information

1
Laboratory of Presurgical Epilepsy Evaluation, Program of Functional Neurology and Neurosurgery, University Hospital of Geneva, Geneva 1211, Switzerland. olaf.blanke@hcuge.ch

Abstract

'Out-of-body' experiences (OBEs) are curious, usually brief sensations in which a person's consciousness seems to become detached from the body and take up a remote viewing position. Here we describe the repeated induction of this experience by focal electrical stimulation of the brain's right angular gyrus in a patient who was undergoing evaluation for epilepsy treatment. Stimulation at this site also elicited illusory transformations of the patient's arm and legs (complex somatosensory responses) and whole-body displacements (vestibular responses), indicating that out-of-body experiences may reflect a failure by the brain to integrate complex somatosensory and vestibular information.

PMID:
12239558
DOI:
10.1038/419269a
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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