Parietal Lobe

General Information

The brain is a complex structure that has many parts. Of course, this is to be expected especially when it is the coordinator of the body. The main parts of the brain are the cerebrum, cerebellum and the medulla. There are other structures that are not as prominent as the three mentioned above. 

The cerebrum which is the largest brain structure has four lobes that are very important to our existence as humans. The Frontal, Parietal, Occipital and Temporal lobes all have different functions and damage to any or all could be fatal to the individual. Other structures that will be discussed are the medulla and the pons. More information on the parietal lobe can be found as you scroll this page. 

Parietal Lobe

The parietal lobe (in blue) is located in the posterior position to the frontal lobe and superior to the parietal lobes near the top of the center of the cerebral cortex. It works closely with the frontal lobe to aid visual perception. The parietal lobe is very important because of its role in sensory perception. Some of the functions of the parietal lobe are:

  • Localization of touch 
  • Visuospatial navigation: proprioception, determine location in space
  • Assess visual attributes: size, shape, orientation
  • Coordination of hand, arm, and eyes 
  • Coordination of attention 
  • Processing language
Structures of the Parietal Lobe

Postcentral gyrus: This consists of the primary somatosensory cortex and it helps to map sensory information onto the sensory homonculus.

Posterior parietal cortex: This region of the parietal lobe plays an important role in coordinating movement and spatial reasoning. It also plays a role in attention especially attention driven by new stimuli.

Superior parietal lobule: This is responsible for helping an individual determine their orientation in space and of other objects. It also helps to coordinate fine motor skills and sensory input from the hands. 

Inferior parietal lobule: This is the part of the parietal lobe that assesses facial expressions. It also plays a role in these different functions: language processing, processing basic math and even one’s body image. The inferior parietal tubule has sub-regions: angular gyrus and supramarginal gyrus.

What Happens if the Parietal Lobe is Damaged?

Damage to any part of the parietal lobe could result in difficulties in performing activities normally. Some of those effects are listed below:

Right parietal lobe damage 

  • Hinder ability to care for body because undermine ability to notice/care for one side of your body 
  • May be unable to make or draw things

Gerstmann’s syndrome:

  • Damage to left parietal lobe 
  • Struggle with writing, arithmetic, language, and perception of objects 

Balint’s syndrome: 

  • Impedes motor skills and visual attention 
  • May be unable to voluntarily direct eyes 
  • Unable to reach or use object without looking at it 

Mental Health Parietal Lobe Quiz

Find out how much you’ve learned through our resources by taking our short quiz! It covers everything about the parietal lobe of the brain.

1 / 6

The postcentral gyrus is a structure of the parietal lobe.

2 / 6

The inferior parietal lobule helps coordinate fine motor skills.

3 / 6

Which is NOT a symptom of Balint’s syndrome:

4 / 6

The parietal lobe plays a role in:

5 / 6

Damage to the parietal lobe can lead to Gerstmann’s syndrome:

6 / 6

Damage to the parietal lobe can lead to:

Your score is

0%

Sources:

SpinalCord.com Team. Parietal Lobe: Function, Location, and Structure, 3 Dec. 2020, www.spinalcord.com/parietal-lobe.

*This site content is provided for informational purposes only and does not intend to substitute professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have medical questions and/or concerns, please contact a medical professional.