Aphasia in Children
Aphasia is a disorder that results from damage to the parts of the brain that contain language. Aphasia causes problems with any or all of the following: speaking, listening, reading, and writing.
Broca's: non-fluent aphasia, you know what you want to say, but you have trouble saying or writing what you mean
Wernicke's: fluent aphasia, you hear the voice or see the print, but you can't make sense of the words
Global: non-fluent, you can't speak, understand speech, read, or write
Aphasia does not have any single specific impairment in language. Instead, it affects a family of disorders in four primary areas: spoken language expression, spoken language comprehension, written expression, and reading comprehension.
(American Speech-Language- Hearing Association [ASHA], 2014)
>Brain plasticity is strongest in childhood, which explains the better prognosis for children with acquired aphasia. In childhood the brain has more strategies and more capacity to recover than the adult brain. Also during childhood, the brain has the ability to transfer language to either the right hemisphere, or to, uncommitted areas of the left hemisphere. This process is also known as intro-hemisphere or inter-hemisphere reorganization
>Pre-pubertal focal brain lesions would have a higher recovery rate than a post-pubertal focal brain lesion. This “critical period” was defined as the biologically determined time-window in which the brains plasticity was maximal.
> Can be delivered to a client with chronic non-fluent aphasia
> At first the client reading paragraphs or sentences aloud with the clinician and then the client is asked to repeat the same paragraph or sentence independently.
> Improves reading comprehension by providing practice in phonological and semantic reading routes
> Other improvements include improvement in oral expression, auditory comprehension, and written expression.
*3;10- decreasing production of one word utterances and increasing production of two word utterances
*5;6- sharp increase in MLU (1.7-->3.3)
*6;6- was able to produce morphologically complete simple sentences including both adverbial and adjectival expansions
(Kojima, Mimura, Auchi, & Kato, 2009)
>55-year old male acquired mild fluent aphasia and was studied over a 12-month period
*minimal change in the sentence-level grammar and showed a consistence significant impairment in story grammar
Put it all together
Although there is not a single specific aspect of language that recovers from a child’s plastic brain there is an overall improvement in the child’s language abilities
(Stojmenovska & Filipova, 2004)
Cherney, L. (2010). Oral reading for language in aphasia (orla): Evaluating the efficacy of computer-delivered therapy in chronic nonfluent aphasia. Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation, 17(6), 423-431. doi:10.1310/tsr1706-423
Coelho, C. A. (2003). Longitudinal assessment of coherence in an adult with fluent aphasia: A follow-up study. Aphasiology, 17(2), 173. doi:10.1080/02687030244000590
Cynthia, M., (2013, March 20). Acquired Aphasia [Video File]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNCTApcX1iY
Frostig, R. (2014). What is brain plasticity, and can it help relive psychiatric or degenerative brain disorders? Society of neuroscience. Retrieved from http://www.brainfacts.org/about-neuroscience/ask-an-expert/articles/2012/what-is-brain-plasticity
Kojima, T., Mimura, M., Auchi, K., & Kato, M. (2009). Early recovery from acquired child aphasia and changes of cerebral blood flow. Journal of Neurolinguistics, 22(5), 451-464. doi:10.1016/j.jneuroling.2009.03.005
Stojmenovska, M., & Filipova, S. (2004). Review of a case of child with acquired aphasia. Journal of Special Education & Rehabilitation, (3/4), 97-102.