Right hemispatial ipsilesional neglect with chronic right hemisphere strokes

John B. Williamson, Damon G. Lamb, D. Brandon Burtis, Salsabil Haque, Eduardo M. Zilli, Tigran Kesayan, Michal Harciarek, Kenneth M. Heilman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: Patients who present with spatial neglect after stroke often perform normally on tests for neglect after a few weeks. Whereas tests for neglect are often performed directly in front of a patient, in their actual environments many important stimuli may be present within their left or right hemispace. The presence and severity of neglect often depends on the hemisphere injured. It is possible, in chronic stroke, for spatial judgments to be influenced by an interaction of stroke laterality and the spatial location of stimuli. The objective of this study was to learn if unilateral hemispheric chronic strokes contribute to a spatial bias with laterally presented stimuli. Method: There were 70 participants, 62 with unilateral chronic strokes (>6 months post onset) including 35 with left hemisphere damage (LHD), 27 with right hemisphere damage (RHD), and 8 demographically similar people without history of stroke. Participants were asked to bisect 300 lines presented with distractors on the left, right, or both sides of the line, or no distractor, on a touch-screen monitor in right, center or left hemispace. Results: There was a significant interaction between the side of the hemispheric lesion and the side of the body where these lines were presented. Specifically, in right space, patients with RHD deviated leftward in comparison to the other groups. Furthermore, there was an interaction between group and distractor induced bias. All three groups approached the left distractor, and the patients with LHD also approached the right distractor. Conclusions: Although spatial neglect is more severe in contralesional than ipsilesional hemispace in the period immediately following a stroke, over time patients with RHD may develop ipsilesional neglect that is more severe in ipsilesional than contralesional space. The mechanism underlying this bias is not known and may be related to attempted compensation or the development of a contralateral attentional/intentional grasp.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)347-356
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 21 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Approach
  • avoidance
  • bias
  • distractor
  • hemispace
  • ipsilesional
  • laterality
  • line bisection
  • neglect
  • spatial
  • stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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