Saturday, June 24, 2023

What are the causes and treatments for aphasia?

 Aphasia is a language disorder that affects how a person communicates. It is usually caused by damage to the left side of the brain, often due to a stroke, severe head injury, or a brain tumor. Progressive neurological conditions, such as dementia, can also cause aphasia

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Symptoms of aphasia include difficulty with reading, listening, speaking, and typing or writing. People with aphasia may make mistakes with the words they use, such as using the wrong sounds in a word, choosing the wrong word, or putting words together incorrectly. However, aphasia does not affect a person's intelligence
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The recommended treatment for aphasia is usually speech and language therapy, which is carried out by a speech and language therapist (SLT). If you were admitted to the hospital, there should be an SLT team there. When you leave the hospital, an SLT should be available through a community rehabilitation team or, after a stroke, an early supported discharge team
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 Speech and language therapy can help a person with aphasia relearn and practice language skills and learn to use other ways to communicate. Family members often participate in the process, helping the person communicate
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Researchers are also investigating the use of medications, alone or in combination with speech therapy, to help people with aphasia. Certain drugs are being studied for the treatment of aphasia, such as drugs that may improve blood flow to the brain, enhance the brain's recovery ability, or help replace depleted chemicals in the brain (neurotransmitters). Several medications, such as memantine (Namenda), donepezil (Aricept, Adlarity), galantamine (Razadyne ER), and piracetam, have shown promise in small studies. But more research is needed before these treatments can be recommended
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There are two general categories of therapies for aphasia: impairment-based therapies and compensatory therapies. Impairment-based therapies are aimed at improving language functions and consist of procedures in which the clinician directly stimulates specific listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills. Compensatory therapies are aimed at compensating for deficits not amenable to retraining and finding alternative ways of communicating
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In addition to speech and language therapy and medication, other treatments for aphasia include intensive treatment/programs, such as intensive aphasia day treatment, and community integration programs, such as peer support from other individuals with chronic aphasia
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In summary, aphasia is a language disorder caused by damage to the left side of the brain, often due to a stroke, severe head injury, or a brain tumor. Speech and language therapy is the recommended treatment for aphasia, and researchers are investigating the use of medications to help people with aphasia. Other treatments include intensive treatment/programs and community integration programs
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