Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
Journal articles

Lorazepam impairs perceptual integration of visual forms: a central effect.

Abstract : Previous studies have shown a lorazepam effect on visual perception. We tested whether this impairment resulted from a peripheral effect induced by benzodiazepines. A first experiment showed that a single dose of lorazepam induces an oculomotor imbalance without impairing visual acuity or accommodation. In a second experiment, we tested whether the impairment induced by lorazepam on visual perception still occurred in monocular vision. Subjects matched incomplete forms controlled on the spacing and alignment of their local contour elements. A reference object was first displayed and followed by two laterally displayed objects, a target and a distractor. The distractor was the mirror-reversed version of the target. Performance was impaired in the lorazepam group when the reference was an incomplete form with a spacing of 10.8' or 22.2' of arc. These results were not correlated with sedation. They confirm that lorazepam has a central deleterious effect on visual perception. A post-hoc analysis also suggested that lorazepam-treated subjects used asymmetry in the stimuli as a compensatory strategy. This result is discussed in relation to previous hypotheses about the physiological mechanisms that determine the effects of lorazepam on visual perception.
Complete list of metadatas
Contributor : Anny Wartel <>
Submitted on : Monday, October 20, 2008 - 2:33:40 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, May 5, 2020 - 2:52:06 PM


  • HAL Id : hal-00332207, version 1
  • PUBMED : 8876026



Arnaud Giersch, M. Boucart, C. Speeg-Schatz, F. Muller-Kauffmann, J. M. Danion. Lorazepam impairs perceptual integration of visual forms: a central effect.. Psychopharmacology, Springer Verlag, 1996, 126 (3), pp.260-70. ⟨hal-00332207⟩



Record views