Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) with 123I-iodoamphetamine (IMP) as tracer was used to study regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) distribution in six patients with the catatonic subtype of schizophrenia (DSM-III-R). IMP-SPECT imaging revealed a significant reduction of rCBF in the parietal lobes of both hemispheres. Three-dimensional reconstruction of the SPECT images identified the superior region of the frontoparietal lobe as the most severely affected region. The pattern of rCBF deficits observed in catatonic schizophrenia differs markedly from that seen in 13 patients with other subtypes of schizophrenia and 7 normal control subjects. These observations indicate that parietal lobe dysfunction may be an important component in the pathology of the catatonic subtype of schizophrenia.