Aphasia syndrome: Causes, signs and treatments

Aphasia is a decline or complete loss of language due to physical damage to the brain. This syndrome occurs mainly in the elderly due to stroke, traumatic brain injury, brain infection or brain tumor.

Aphasia – What is Aphasia?

Aphasia is a complete loss or impairment of language that leads to difficulties with communication. This syndrome usually occurs suddenly after a brain injury, brain tumor, encephalitis, and is mostly caused by a stroke.

Aphasia is actually a language disorder. Language disorders can occur in both children and adults with diverse causes such as brain injury, brain tumor, cerebrovascular accident (stroke) or can also be caused by disorders in the mental development process. terrible. In particular, aphasia syndrome is a sudden decline or loss of language due to physical damage to the brain.

The syndrome of aphasia has a significant impact on the quality of life. The decline/complete loss of language ability makes it difficult for the patient to communicate, write, and even calculate. All cases of Aphasia require treatment, but there are also cases that recover on their own without intervention.

Causes of aphasia syndrome

Aphasia has an overlapping association with other language disorders. The most obvious difference, however, is that aphasia is often sudden and is associated with physical damage to the brain.

aphasia language impotence syndrome

Stroke is the leading cause of aphasia – Aphasia

Common causes of aphasia:

  • Stroke (cerebrovascular accident): Aphasia often occurs after a cerebrovascular accident. When a blood vessel in the brain bursts, several areas inside the brain can be damaged. The result is impaired or complete loss of language ability. Experts often rely on the location of brain damage to classify symptoms.
  • Brain damage: In addition to stroke, brain damage due to infection, tumor, trauma, etc. can also be the cause of aphasia. In addition, some people also have problems with memory, thinking (thinking).
  • Neurodegeneration: A less common cause of aphasia is the degeneration of nerve cells. This condition is common in people with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Some other causes: In addition to the above causes, aphasia can be caused by epilepsy, Wilson’s disease, migraine, heavy metal poisoning, etc. In which, the cases of speech impotence Migraines and epilepsy may resolve on their own without treatment.

Signs of aphasia (Aphasia)

People with Aphasia have language problems that lead to difficulty reading, writing, and speaking. Some people have difficulty with calculations and memory loss. Aphasia is caused by physical damage to the brain. Therefore, doctors often use the name of the affected brain area to classify the types of aphasia.

The Broca and Wernicke regions always work together when we talk, write, or read-understand. Damage to either of these organs causes language problems. Based on the location of damage in the brain, aphasia is classified into the following groups:

aphasia language impotence syndrome

Manifestations of aphasia depend on the location and extent of brain damage

– Broca region aphasia, also known as expressive aphasia

Broca’s area is part of the frontal lobe, grasping just in front of the left temple. This agency is responsible for choosing and arranging words to ensure fluency in communication. Lesions in Broca’s area can lead to difficulty speaking and finding words to express your thoughts. However, the patient can still understand the words of others and himself.

In addition, Broca’s aphasia affects the ability to repeat. The person will have difficulty repeating phrases or sentences. In addition, damage to Broca’s area also affects the muscles and is sometimes accompanied by paralysis on one side of the body.

– Wernicke area aphasia aka fluent aphasia

The Wernicke region is responsible for memorizing knowledge, words, and choosing the right words, and then sending signals back to Broca’s region. Therefore, damage in this position will cause hearing-understanding problems. People with Wernicke aphasia usually understand only simple words and sentences. The patient cannot understand figurative language and does not understand complex words.

However, Wernicke aphasia does not affect speech fluency. The person may speak fluently, but because they do not really understand the other person’s words, the words may not be appropriate for the content of the conversation.

Similar to Broca’s aphasia, Wernicke’s aphasia also affects the ability to repeat words or phrases. Wernicke’s area is located close to the parts that govern vision. As a result, this form of aphasia is often accompanied by vision problems such as blurred vision or blindness.

– General aphasia

Generalized aphasia is the most severe form of aphasia. This pattern occurs when both Broca’s and Wernicke’s areas are involved. People with a total aphasia have difficulty speaking, and some even lose the ability to speak completely. However, the patient can still repeat simple words and phrases.

Generalized aphasia makes it impossible for patients to understand other people’s speech, in some cases can understand simple sentences but cannot understand complex phrases. This form of aphasia usually occurs after a severe brain injury or stroke. In addition to the effects on language ability, patients will experience sequelae such as blindness or hemiplegia.

– Other forms of aphasia

In addition to the above common forms of aphasia, aphasia (Wernicke) syndrome also includes other forms of aphasia such as:

  • Transcortical motor aphasia: Transcortical aphasia commonly occurs after a stroke in the Broca area. This form has symptoms quite similar to Broca’s aphasia, but the symptoms are milder. The difference is that people with transcortical aphasia do not have difficulty repeating, including repeating whole sentences or phrases.
  • Transcortical sensory aphasia: This form of aphasia is similar to Wernicke’s aphasia but is less severe. The patient also has difficulty understanding other people’s speech but is still able to speak fluently. People with transcortical emotional aphasia do not have difficulty repeating other people’s words. Transcortical sensory aphasia is commonly seen in patients with Alzheimer’s and dementia.
  • Conductive aphasia: Conductive aphasia is characterized by fluent speech but frequent misuse of words. The patient still understands spoken language, but has reduced ability to repeat. Conductive aphasia occurs when a small lesion that disrupts communication between Wernicke’s area and Broca’s area occurs.
  • Mixed cortical aphasia: Mixed cortical aphasia often occurs after cerebrovascular accident. This form has symptoms similar to mixed transcortical aphasia, but the patient can still repeat other people’s words.
  • Anomic aphasia: Aphasia is characterized by difficulty naming objects or actions. It is difficult for the patient to find the right words for action names and objects. Instead, patients often use the word “that” to describe.

Aphasia has a variety of manifestations. In particular, the level of symptoms varies depending on the location of the lesion. Generalized aphasia is the most serious form of the disease and the prognosis is often poor. Most people with this form of aphasia experience only partial improvement and have to live with the sequelae for the rest of their lives.

Effects of aphasia syndrome

Aphasia is not a health threat, but greatly affects quality of life. Language is a means of communication and expression of thoughts and feelings, so the decline or complete loss of language ability causes patients to face many troubles in life.

If it occurs in children and young people, aphasia can prevent the patient from learning and working. Severe cases of aphasia can be completely dependent on the family.

In addition to the above effects, aphasia syndrome also has a significant impact on the psychology of the patient. Difficulty in using language prevents the person from expressing thoughts and feelings and becomes anxious, stressed, and depressed. For this reason, all cases of aphasia require therapeutic intervention.

Diagnosis of aphasia syndrome

Diagnosis of Aphasia is complex and includes a physical exam, language assessment, laboratory tests, and imaging studies. In addition, the doctor will also order some specialized tests to rule out other forms of speech disorders.

Techniques used in the diagnosis of aphasia:

  • Blood tests
  • CT or MRI of the brain
  • EEG measurement
  • X-ray
  • Blood tests
  • General health check

Most cases of aphasia are caused by brain tumors, encephalitis, trauma, and stroke. Therefore, brain imaging is considered the most valuable in the diagnosis of this syndrome.

Methods for the treatment of aphasia

In fact, brain damage is not completely reversible. Therefore, the treatment of aphasia syndrome is still very difficult and limited. However, therapeutic interventions can improve language ability and help improve quality of life.

In some cases, treatment can reverse the damage to the brain, thereby restoring language, calculation and memory abilities. Aphasia caused by migraines, epilepsy, and minor trauma is fully reversible without treatment.

Methods to be considered in the treatment of aphasia:

1. Speech therapy

Speech therapy is the only effective method for aphasia. This therapy requires a combination of medical staff and family. In addition, during the treatment, the members also need to have a suitable attitude so as not to hurt the patient’s psyche.

aphasia language impotence syndrome

Speech therapy helps restore the ability to write, speak, etc. in patients with aphasia syndrome

Speech therapy helps restore some language ability. The response to therapy will depend on the location and extent of the brain damage and the patient’s persistence. Overall, active therapy improves language skills significantly, and at least the patient can use language for basic communication.

In addition to the treatment time in the hospital, the family also needs to support the patient in treatment at home. Persistence in speech therapy can restore the ability to speak, understand, and write. Besides, exercise is also a way to stimulate nerve cells to recover and regenerate.

2. Self-improvement measures

In addition to speech therapy, patients with aphasia can take a number of self-improvement measures, such as:

  • People with aphasia in the Broca region can use written language to express their thoughts and desires. This will help limit obstacles and difficulties in life.
  • Relatives need to support the patient to build a healthy lifestyle, stay away from alcohol, tobacco and limit caffeine. A balanced diet will help restore and regenerate some of the physical damage in the brain.
  • The family should encourage and motivate the patient to actively seek treatment. However, do not take care too much because this will significantly affect psychology.
  • Practicing yoga and meditation helps a lot in restoring mobility and language after injury and stroke. In addition, practicing yoga also helps relieve stress and prevent psychological problems such as anxiety disorders, depression, etc.

Language recovery depends on the location and area of the brain that is damaged. Besides, early treatment will have better results than late cases. Therefore, families need to pay attention so that the person with aphasia has the opportunity to receive early treatment and quickly regain their inherent language ability.

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