The Man Who Lost his Language: A Case of Aphasia Revised Edition

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Aphasia typically occurs suddenly after a stroke or a head injury. But it can also come on gradually from a slow-growing brain tumor or a disease that causes progressive, permanent damage degenerative. Where and how bad the brain damage is and what caused it determine the degree of disability. Once the cause has been addressed, the main treatment for aphasia is speech and language therapy.

The person with aphasia relearns and practices language skills and learns to use other ways to communicate. Family members often participate in the process, helping the person communicate. The severity and scope of the problems depend on the extent of damage and the area of the brain affected. Nonfluent aphasia. Damage to the language network near the left frontal area of the brain usually results in Broca aphasia, which is also called nonfluent aphasia. People with this disorder struggle to get words out, speak in very short sentences and omit words. A person might say "Want food" or "Walk park today.

People with Broca aphasia may understand what other people say better than they can speak. They're often aware of their difficulty communicating and may get frustrated. People with Broca aphasia may also have right-sided paralysis or weakness. Because aphasia is often a sign of a serious problem, such as a stroke, seek emergency medical care if you suddenly develop:. The most common cause of aphasia is brain damage resulting from a stroke — the blockage or rupture of a blood vessel in the brain. Loss of blood to the brain leads to brain cell death or damage in areas that control language.

Bilingual Aphasia

Brain damage caused by a severe head injury, a tumor, an infection or a degenerative process also can cause aphasia. In these cases, the aphasia usually occurs with other types of cognitive problems, such as memory problems or confusion. Primary progressive aphasia is the term used for language difficulty that develops gradually. This is due to the gradual degeneration of brain cells located in the language networks. Sometimes this type of aphasia will progress to a more generalized dementia.

Daniel Tammet.


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