Browsing by Subject "aphasia"

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  • Huotari, Salla-Maaria (Helsingfors universitet, 2015)
    Aims. The purpose of this single-case study was to investigate the effects of intensive tablet-based treatment in overall language performance level and in reading and writing processes in mild aphasia. The communicative effectiveness and task performances on the tablet software were also studied. The tablet software included tasks where semantic, syntactic and phonological processing were required; written naming, sentence writing and reading comprehension. Previous studies have indicated improvements in language skills after computer-based treatment (Katz & Wertz, 1997; Wade, Mortley & Enderby, 2003). Especially reading and writing skills can be treated by the computer-based softwares (Katz, 2008). Methods & Procedures. In this single subject research the ABA design was used. The participant in this study was a 47 year old man who had a stroke 2.5 years earlier. He had a mild chronic aphasia with difficulties in writing, reading and naming. The data of this study was formed by linguistic tests and by a self-assessment method as the participant evaluated his communicative effectiveness (CETI). The methods used in the analysis of written and read narratives included assessing rate, authenticity and the types of errors. The analysis of written narratives also included assessing word classes and type-token –ratio. Based on the data by the tablet-based software the rate and the share of errors of task performances were assessed. Results & Conclusions. Based on the Western Aphasia Battery (WAB) results, the severity of the aphasia decreased but the change was not clinically significant. Naming improved but the change wasn't stable until the follow-up. The participant showed positive development in his written and reading production; he made less spelling and reading errors after the treatment. At the same time reading and writing processes became slower. The share of lexical verbs, adjectives, pronouns and numerals increased in written narratives. The communicative effectiveness improved. The task performance on the tablet software was faster during the fourth week compared to the first week. Also the amount of incorrect performances decreased or remained the same. Based on the results, an intensive self-monitored tablet-based language treatment was effective to the subject.
  • Lemmetyinen, Sanna; Hokkanen, Laura; Klippi, Anu (2020)
    Background: Left hemisphere stroke often causes a severe communication disorder that is usually attributed to aphasia. While aphasia refers to linguistic problems, communication is also accomplished by voluntarily articulate and gestural movements, which may be compromised due to apraxia. Along with aphasia, apraxia is a common disorder in left hemisphere stroke, which in severe cases can limit the use of verbal and nonverbal communication methods. The discussion about apraxia from a communicative perspective is still scarce, although the disorder is regularly experienced among left hemisphere stroke patients with aphasia. The rehabilitation of the disorder in severe apraxia-aphasia is challenging and recovery is slow. Aims: The purpose of this study is to provide an overview of the research on long-term recovery from apraxia and to discuss the meaning of these findings in observing the recovery of communication abilities in a person with a severe apraxia-aphasia. The search was not restricted to any specific type of apraxia, as this review assumes that communication may be influenced by apraxia in its different manifestations. The review is based on a systematic literature search, which includes English-language studies retrieved from the databases of Ovid Medline, PsycINFO, and Scopus. Main Contribution: Seven long-term follow-up studies of apraxia were found; one case study of apraxia of speech (AOS), four group studies of ideomotor apraxia (IMA), one case study of IMA (and aphasia), and one group study of limb apraxia. Conclusions: The reviewed group studies of patients with left hemisphere stroke indicate that apraxia is a persistent disorder, but the steepest recovery occurs within the first few months post-stroke. Imitation skills and actions involving real-tool use in activities of daily functions show the best recovery. Real-tool use also continues to improve longer, while recovery of gesturing after verbal command may not show clear signs of recovery in the chronic stage post-stroke. There is some evidence that the pace of recovery from oral apraxia and limb apraxia is comparable, and recovery from apraxia and aphasia would not correlate. Some of the studies used only imitation to assess changes in gesturing, which cannot be regarded as an ecologically valid measure to compare gesturing in natural communicative situations or even gesturing after verbal command. Finally, no follow-up studies were found that would have discussed apraxia from a communicative perspective. Overall, the field is lacking research on long-term follow-up of patients with apraxic-aphasic disorder.
  • Leo, Vera; Sihvonen, Aleksi J.; Linnavalli, Tanja; Tervaniemi, Mari; Laine, Matti; Soinila, Seppo; Särkämö, Teppo (2018)
    Coupling novel verbal material with a musical melody can potentially aid in its learning and recall in healthy subjects, but this has never been systematically studied in stroke patients with cognitive deficits. In a counterbalanced design, we presented novel verbal material (short narrative stories) in both spoken and sung formats to stroke patients at the acute poststroke stage and 6 months poststroke. The task comprised three learning trials and a delayed recall trial. Memory performance on the spoken and sung tasks did not differ at the acute stage, whereas sung stories were learned and recalled significantly better compared with spoken stories at the 6 months poststroke stage. Interestingly, this pattern of results was evident especially in patients with mild aphasia, in whom the learning of sung versus spoken stories improved more from the acute to the 6-month stages compared with nonaphasic patients. Overall, these findings suggest that singing could be used as a mnemonic aid in the learning of novel verbal material in later stages of recovery after stroke.
  • Martinsuo, Maija (Helsingin yliopisto, 2019)
    Background. Aphasia refers to a disability in the processing of linguistic information. It is most typically due to a stroke. Aphasia impairs a person's ability to understand, produce and use language. Recovery from aphasia is generally divided into three main stages: acute, subacute and chronic. So far, the ability to learn new words in aphasia has only been studied in chronic aphasia. Learning new words is a complex process. In natural language learning, the relationship between a word and its meaning is often not unambiguous, but the words and their possible meanings are numerous, and the connections are complex. The learning of new words can take place by hearing or by reading. The prerequisite for rehabilitation from aphasia is the ability to learn new things, but aphasia research typically uses familiar and everyday words. However, the use of familiar words in research makes it difficult to interpret the results. In order to assess whether a person with aphasia is able to learn new vocabulary, research must be done on a vocabulary that was not available to the person before aphasia. Objectives. The aim of this thesis is to determine, whether people with subacute aphasia can learn novel vocabulary in a situation that imitates natural language learning. This thesis also investigates how the learning ability of people with aphasia compares to the learning ability of healthy matched controls in the same task and how the matched controls learn compared to healthy young adults. Methods. The participants of the study consisted of three groups: young controls, matched controls and aphasic participants. The aphasic participants were examined at HUS Hospital District in Laakso Hospital in Helsinki and in Hyvinkää Hospital. The word learning task consisted of six 3-syllable nonwords that were practiced using a computer program. The task was to combine a spoken and written novel word with the correct novel image, choosing from two different images. Results and conclusions. Learning novel words is possible in subacute aphasia. However, there was great variability in the ability to learn between the aphasic participants. Some learned the words well, others learned some words, and some did not seem to learn the words at all. In addition, some of aphasic participants in the subacute stage were able to maintain the vocabulary they learned for at least a week after learning. Some of the aphasic participants learned the words on par with matched controls but for some the learning was significantly weaker. Both young adults and matched controls performed well on the learning task, but young adults learn the words faster than matched controls.