Clinical aspects of the rubber hand illusion

Jutta Peterburs, Sebastian Ocklenburg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The rubber hand illusion is a multisensory phenomenon characterized by the subjective feeling that a rubber hand is part of one's body. It may occur when covert tactile stimulation of a participant's hand co-occurs with overt corresponding stimulation of a rubber hand. The illusion allows investigating distortions of body image and body perceptions which have been reported for several neurological and psychiatric disorders, e. g. somatoform disorders, focal hand dystonia, visuo-spatial neglect, eating disorders and schizophrenia. Moreover, the illusion has been successfully applied in order to aid the integration of prostheses into the body image of limb-amputated patients. Understanding the mechanisms underlying body image and body schema distortions may substantially advance the understanding of these diseases and their treatment options.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-55
Number of pages7
JournalZeitschrift fur Neuropsychologie
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Amputation
  • Body image
  • Eating disorders
  • Focal dystonia
  • Multisensory integration
  • Neglect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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