Aphasia Symptoms and Treatment

Aphasia Overview

 

Aphasia is a language disorder that is caused by a partial or complete loss of the already learned language. At such a speech loss may occur if certain areas are damaged in the brain.

Most frequently aphasia occurs as a result of vascular changes that lead to the brain circulation disorders. As reasons for this, for example, atherosclerosis or diabetes mellitus are eligible. If the blood supply disrupted in a brain vessel, it may cause a stroke, which accounts for around four out of ten sufferers to aphasia.

Other possible triggers of aphasia are: 

  • Craniocerebral trauma
  • Tumors
  • Inflammation or lack of oxygen in the brain
  • Gradual brain degradation
  • In adults, the stroke is most common cause of aphasia.
  • In children, the speech impediment arises and it is mostly by a head injury.

Depending on which predominate symptoms in an aphasia distinguishes different types of language disorder. The main forms of aphasia, which can be largely damage certain brain regions are:

  • Broca’s aphasia (or motor aphasia): in which mainly the language education is disrupted.
  • The receptive aphasia (or sensory aphasia): Which is characterized by an impaired language comprehension.
  • Amnesic aphasia: Which is mainly has problem to finding words
  • Gobal aphasia: Which is considered the most severe form.

A sudden aphasia often improves by itself – especially in the first six months after brain injury.It is caused by a reduced blood supply. However Acquired language disorders can last even longer.

In any case:

it is advisable as early as possible to begin with a speech therapy.

To prevent an aphasia, it is particularly important to keep the risk of stroke and the risk of head injuries.


Aphasia

The term aphasia is denoted by definition as an acquired after completion of language development speech disorder or impairment of language education or speech comprehension, which is caused by a brain injury.

Frequency

An aphasia is most common in adults as a result of a stroke on: Adults come every year to a stroke-induced injury to the language region of the brain that causes prolonged speech disorders. Children and adolescents up to 15 years have an aphasia because of accidental craniocerebral trauma


Typical Causes of Aphasia

An aphasia always arises by damage to the brain. Such brain damage can have different causes.

  • A stroke usually is responsible for aphasia: About 80 percent of aphasia are the result of a circulatory disorder or bleeding in the brain. Risk of stroke increases with age, mostly adults are affected.
  • The second most frequent aphasia is caused by accidents in which there is a head injury: Around 10 percent of aphasia in adults occur after a head injury, which brain tissue is damaged directly. Craniocerebral traumas are responsible for the child’s aphasia around 80 percent. Accidents with traumatic brain injury mostly occurr on the road, also during sports or games. It can also be the result of physical violence.
  • Third cause of aphasia is brain tumor: Brain tumor causes 7 percent of all cases of aphasia.

Other causes include ;

  • A slowly loss of brain substance
  • An inflammatory process in the brain
  • An insufficient supply of brain tissue oxygen (is called hypoxia.)

Aphasia Symptoms and Forms of Speech Disorder

An aphasia can manifest itself in speaking, listening, reading and writing: In each of these linguistic activities aphasia may be affected more or less. In general, the speech disorders suddenly  occur as a direct result of damage to the brain.aphasi

  • Aphasia can develop slowly under conditions that are characterized by progressive loss of brain substance.
  • Speech disorder
  • Memory disorders
  • Abnormalities in the thinking and behavior
  • Brain Degradation

Aphasia can be pronounced differently depends on where the brain is damaged.

Accordingly, various forms of aphasia can be distinguished but  four forms are most important:

  • Expressive aphasia
  • Receptive aphasia
  • Amnestic aphasia
  • Global aphasia

Expressive aphasia: Language education is mainly disturbed. Sufferers have difficulty to produce language. That’s why it is called speech disorder as motor aphasia. The expressive aphasia is an injury due to that affects Broca’s speech center essentially: This is located in the frontal lobes of the brain in which is called Area 44 Brodmann.

Receptive aphasia: Receptive aphasia is characterized by a word finding disorder and a greatly impaired language comprehension. Sufferers often have difficulty in understanding simple words. However, they are often able to recognize voice accompanying communication factors (such as differences in pitch between questions and answers, or facial expressions), and can participate in discussions on that basis.

Amnestic aphasia: A word finding disorder leads to bigger pauses or phrase crashes in the otherwise almost normal flow of speech. Often people develop with such language disorders strategies to replace the missing words by descriptions (for example, “the thing”). The problems in finding words occur when writing.

Brain damage is found mainly in the lower temporal lobe at the transition to the parietal lobe in amnesic aphasia. However, this form of speech disorder is not always unique to a specific brain region.

Global aphasia: Global aphasia causes most serious symptoms. Global aphasia often repeat form rigid expressions, which are not communicative purpose and many sufferers are barely able to vocalizate. This usually affects all the components of the language system and all kinds of language version (speaking, writing, listening, reading).


Aphasia Diagnosis

The physician makes initial diagnosis with patient’s language skills. In order to assess the exact language disorder, there are several tests available. Besides, a lot of experience and understanding are required.

Aphasia Diagnosis

To diagnose the aphasia as quickly as possible , there is a token test. This test indicates by about 90 percent if an acquired language disorder as a result of brain damage is present.

A precise diagnosis is often called the Aachen Aphasia Test which is used to make it possible to determine the different forms of aphasia and the respective severity. Moreover, the test is also suitable to accompany therapy in order to assess whether the treatment progress.

Doctor checks with Aachen Aphasia test are ;

  • Writing
  • Reading
  • Calling
  • Speech understanding.

Speech therapist is recommended as treatment in an aphasia.


 Aphasia Prevention

You can significantly reduce your risk of acquired language disorders through various measures:

Aphasia usually occur as a result of stroke and is causes primarily by atherosclerosis. Therefore, preventing an aphasia means to reduce especially the risk of atherosclerosis! For this, it is important that you pay attention to the following values:

  • Reduce overweight
  • Ensure adequate exercise
  • Quit smoking

An aphasia can occur due to a head injury after an accident in children. Therefore, it is also important to provide sufficient head protection: It is recommended that wear a protective helmet (when cycling) as well as games and sports (for example, when inline skating, skiing).

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