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Neuropsychology of brain damage and language: The aphasias

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Ted Petit

Neuropsychology of brain damage and language: The aphasias Monday, December 03, 2012 7:06 PM  What lobes are involved  How is language organized in the left hemisphere  Alexia - problems in reading  Agraphia - problems in writing  The bigger the stroke, the more areas damaged, the more severe the symptoms  Varies from patient to patient  Three major types of aphasia:  Receptive aphasia (receiving info about language - getting language in)  Integrative aphasia (problems with the comprehension of language as well as the formation of language)  Expressive aphasia ( Getting language out)  Wernicke's area : Posterior portion of the temporal lobe -- receptive problem  Motor cortex - integrative aphasia  Ventral portion of motor strip - Broca's area - expressive aphasia  Questions you ask the patient - point, identify, read, write, speak, repeat  Receptive Aphasia:  Pure word deafness  Problems in relating incoming sounds into representations which allow the understanding of discourse  Can hear sounds but cannot distinguish it as language  Normal ability to read  Can also write  Can speak  Language abilities in tact  Cannot understand anything that comes in through the ears  Integrative Aphasias  Understanding language  6 different types  Problems in selecting and arranging meaningful units and their eventual conversion into comprehensible coherent speech  Wernicke's Aphasia:  Often also referred to as Jargon Aphasia  Basic problem -people make unintelligible statements  Chatter on and on without making any sense at all  Harmony of speech, musical quality still there - average case  May not actually sound like English or be English - most extreme cases  Musical qualities of language are there so it sounds like a foreign language Differential diagnosis -   Naming: cannot name objects well but usually close --> depends on severity  Use objects and utensils normally - not a motor cortex problem  Respond very poorly to commands  Cannot repeat what you say unless it is a very short, familiar quip - something we use or hear often in our daily life  IQ test - intellect generally down, make silly errors  Singing - music is intact, they can sing, will usually invert passages or include extra words  Reading - little evidence of any comprehension of written material  Can read out loud what is written but cannot understand it  Writing - will write down the weird things they are saying  Nominal (Naming) Aphasia - anomia  Cant name things  Involves damage in the area of the angular gyrus (area where temporal, par
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