Objective: Patients with schizophrenia have visual-processing deficits. This study examines visual white matter integrity as a potential mechanism for these deficits. Method: Diffusion tensor imaging was used to examine white matter integrity at four levels of the visual system in 17 patients with schizophrenia and 21 comparison subjects. The levels examined were the optic radiations, the striate cortex, the inferior parietal lobule, and the fusiform gyrus. Results: Schizophrenia patients showed a significant decrease in fractional anisotropy in the optic radiations but not in any other region. Conclusions: This finding indicates that white matter integrity is more impaired at initial input, rather than at higher levels of the visual system, and supports the hypothesis that visual-processing deficits occur at the early stages of processing.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychiatry and Mental health