Visually-induced analgesia: Seeing the body reduces pain
Matt Longo (Birkbeck College, University of London)

March 20, 2014, 1:00pm - 2:30pm
Institute of Philosophy, University of London

Senate House
United Kingdom

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Thurs 20 March, 5.00pm IP CenSes Seminar: Room 246, Senate House, second floor, WC1
Matt Longo (Psychological Sciences, Birkbeck)
Visually-induced analgesia: Seeing the body reduces pain

In this talk, I will discuss work my colleagues and I have been conducting investigating the perceptual consequences of vision of one’s own body. In particular, I will focus on our finding that seeing the body is analgesia for acute pain, reducing the perceived intensity of pain and associated neural responses. I will discuss evidence that this effect may be due to visually-induced modulation of inhibitory interneuron activity in somatosensory cortex. Finally, I will also discuss some recent work demonstrating a wider set of perceptual and autonomic consequences of vision of the body. Vision of the body appears to modulate a constellation of perceptual and neural processes similar to those affected in chronic pain, though in the opposite direction. .

Part of the Rethinking the Senses Project, funded by the AHRC.

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