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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The malediction of a name

Remi Sonaiya

June 30, 2009 03:08PMT

Nigeria, country in West Central Africa, on the Atlantic; a member of the Commonwealth...

Nigeria. A composed word, made up of Niger and -ia.
Niger: 1. river in West Africa, flowing from Guinea through Mali, Niger, and Nigeria into the Atlantic 2. country in West Central Africa, north of Nigeria (not of relevance to this article).
-ia: a suffix used in: 1. names of certain diseases (pneumonia) 2. names of some plants and animals (zinnia)

Lord, have mercy! I must confess that it never occurred to me, before settling down to write this piece, that the primary function of the suffix on the name of my beloved country is for designating diseases: amnesia, anemia, aphasia, bulimia, diphtheria, dyslexia, malaria...! Who on earth did this to us?

Nigeria, a land through which flows the great river Niger - a fact which alone should have ensured for all time the prosperity of its inhabitants, for who does not know that big rivers are sources of great wealth? Then, as if to signal the determination of Nature to so bless this land, a second river flows from the other direction (the Benue), joins forces with the Niger in Lokoja, and the duo continue their southward journey majestically, pouring out their waters into the Atlantic Ocean atop a riverbed concealing some of the richest marine resources the world knows.

Nigeria, a diseased country living up to the primary functional meaning of its suffix? That seems to be the reality being witnessed, most dishearteningly, for ours is a nation languishing in the throes of the most incomprehensible degree of want and deprivation, whereas we have all that is required to make us a haven to be sought after by all, from far and near. Is there truly malediction in that suffix? What about other nations whose names follow the same pattern, ending in -ia?

Liberia: case confirmed (although the nation is trying to rise up now after those horrors of war); Tunisia, Algeria: well, neither here nor there (one doesn't hear so much about them, anyway); Bulgaria, Latvia, Romania, Lithuania, Russia, and some other eastern European nations: mostly crisis-ridden, struggling to re-brand, with communism so discredited; Italia (!): quite different from most other western European countries, you'd agree, where the rule of the mafia seems to hold sway. There does seem to be something to this suffix...

But then, Malaysia. This is a country with a history very much like ours, united only as a nation in 1963 from the various British colonies which had existed since the late 18th century. It has experienced political upheavals and other troubles too, just like we have. But then, something happened, and Malaysia is known today as a country with enviable GDP and per capita figures, rigorously pursuing its vision for industrialisation. So, what happened?

I am convinced that there was a special session of the Parliament of Malaysia during which the head of state challenged the members directly concerning the sorry state of the nation.

The man had been so perplexed, wondering what was keeping the country down, making it impossible for it to fully realise its potential. He invited members to have a brain-storming session seeking to identify the source of their problems and identify solutions.

All kinds of ideas started coming up: some members claimed that their former colonial masters were the source of their troubles and were still hiding in the shadows, pulling strings and knocking people's heads together; others felt that they were doomed because they were a concocted nation, made up of various ethic groups.

Finally, an old member got up and cleared his throat: "Fellow citizens of our country, he began, I have thought long and hard about this issue, and have come to the conclusion that the problem has to do with our name." Silence. Looks of bewilderment. "Yes, do you not see that Malaysia rhymes with malaria, aphasia, anemia - all of them diseases! That is the source of the trouble." A young, hot-blooded Malay member jumps up: "Are we going to have to change our name then? Do you want us to be called by the name of some minority group?"

"Ah, patience, my young man, patience! I have also checked the facts and found that not all words which end in -ia relate to diseases. In fact, some of the most beautiful flowers in the world end in that suffix: begonia, zinnia, bouvardia, heliconia, gardenia, watsonia, freesia, and many others.

I therefore solemnly move that a bill be passed this day, stating that the nation of Malaysia chooses to be associated not with the first meaning of its suffix, but with the second; we refuse the negative association with diseases but rather with flowers and all that their beauty represents." Thunderous applause.

(For those of you sceptics who doubt the veracity of this account, just open your eyes wide next time the advertisement for Malaysia comes up on CNN and see the incredible flora and fauna displayed.)

Now, as for you, Nigeria, my beloved country, here is my prayer for you:

May your bodies of water swarm with tilapia,
May your desert lands be covered with acacia*,
And may you know boundless alaafia!
Peace to you, Nigeria.

I suggest you check out acacia on Wikipedia and be totally bowled over by the plant's incredible variety of uses. Northern Nigeria has at least the acacia senegal, one of the 1,300 species found around the world, which produces true gum Arabic.

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Monday, June 29, 2009

Triangle Aphasia Project at WakeMed Rehab Completes Successful Aphasia Awareness Month

During the month of June, the Triangle Aphasia Project (TAP) at WakeMed Rehab made great strides advocating for aphasia awareness.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PRLog (Press Release)Jun 29, 2009 – During the month of June, the Triangle Aphasia Project (TAP) at WakeMed Rehab made great strides advocating for aphasia awareness.

On June 2, North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue issued a proclamation declaring the month of June Aphasia Awareness Month. Citing the affects of aphasia and its prevalence in the United States, the Governor’s proclamation serves to increase public awareness of the disorder. She reinforced her commitment to aphasia awareness by meeting with members of TAP in her office during Aphasia Legislative Day on June 24.

“My own mother suffered from aphasia, and so few North Carolinians know anything about this debilitating condition,” Gov. Perdue said. “I commend the advocates with TAP and WakeMed who dedicate their time to helping people with aphasia and increasing awareness about this little-known disorder.”

There are one million individuals with aphasia in America – this is one in every 250 people. The purpose of declaring June Aphasia Awareness Month and hosting an annual Legislative Day is to help educate North Carolina’s citizens, policymakers, state agency officials, health care professionals, and the general public about aphasia and the need for research programs to support better, more effective treatments.
“The meeting with Governor Perdue, Aphasia Legislative Day and Aphasia Awareness month gives a voice to a disorder that robs its victims of that very power – the ability to communicate thoughts and feelings,” commented Maura Silverman, speech pathologist and director of TAP. “Advocacy is fundamentally courageous, but for individuals without intact communicative abilities, it is truly heroic.”

Aphasia is a communication disorder that is often the result of stroke or brain injury that causes damage to the left hemisphere of the brain, affecting language but preserving intellect, memory and personality. Effects of aphasia may include a loss or reduction in the ability to speak, read, write and comprehend.

TAP helps patients return to work and social pursuits by overcoming the frustration and social stigma associated with aphasia. TAP incorporates the entire family and social circle by teaching family, friends and community members to “speak aphasia” and help build “communication bridges” easing the transition back into the community. TAP provides group and individualized therapy, research, advocacy and support programs for people with aphasia. The programs that TAP has developed are being recognized nationally as a model for intervention in the area of aphasia.

# # #

About WakeMed Health & Hospitals
WakeMed Health & Hospitals is a private, not-for-profit health care organization based in Raleigh, N.C. The 804-bed system comprises a network of health care facilities throughout Wake and Johnston Counties, including: a Level I Trauma Center and tertiary referral hospital and rehabilitation hospital in Raleigh, a community hospital in Cary, comprehensive outpatient centers and freestanding emergency departments in North Raleigh and Apex, seven outpatient rehabilitation sites, two skilled-nursing and outpatient facilities, a 100+-physician multispecialty practice, and home health services. Throughout the system, there are an additional 66 beds under construction and 41 beds recently approved by the state. Centers of excellence include cardiac and vascular care, women’s and children’s services, physical rehab, emergency and trauma, orthopaedics, neurosciences, home care and numerous wellness and community outreach programs. Visit www.wakemed.org.

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Wernicke’s area

June 29, 2009

Wernicke’s area, in the upper rear part of the left temporal lobe, is named for Carl Wernicke (1848-1905), who first described it in 1874. Aphasia associated with this area—called Wernicke’s aphasia—differs dramatically from Broca’s aphasia. While speech in Broca’s aphasia is overly concise, in Wernicke’s aphasia it is filled with an abundance of words (logorrhea), but they are words which fail to convey the speaker’s meaning. Even though their pitch and rhythm sound normal, many of the words are used incorrectly or are made-up words with no meaning (aphasic jargon). Besides their speech difficulties, persons with Wernicke’s aphasia also have trouble comprehending language, repeating speech, naming objects, reading, and writing. An interesting exception to their comprehension impairment is their ability to respond readily to direct commands that involve bodily movement, such as “Close your eyes.”

Certain types of aphasia—called disconnection aphasias—are caused by damage to the connections of Broca’s or Wernicke’s areas to each other or to other parts of the brain. Conduction aphasia results from damage to the fiber bundles connecting the two language areas and is characterized by fluent but somewhat meaningless speech and an inability to repeat phrases correctly. In transcortical sensory aphasia, the connections between Wernicke’s area and the rest of the brain are severed, but the area itself is left intact. Persons with this condition have trouble understanding language and expressing their thoughts but can repeat speech without any trouble. Another type of aphasia, word deafness, occurs when auditory information is prevented from reaching Wernicke’s area. Persons affected by word deafness can hear sounds of all kinds and understand written language, but spoken language is incomprehensible to them, since the auditory signals cannot reach the part of the brain that decodes them.

Taken from : The Gale Encyclopedia Of Psychology 2ND Edition - Bonnie Strickland
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Sunday, June 28, 2009

UK: Rip it up and star again

GLASGOW, Scotland / The Sunday Herald / Life / June 28, 2009

After the singer Edwyn Collins suffered two severe strokes, his partner Grace Maxwell had to rebuild both their lives

By Teddy Jamieson

IN  THE DAYS IMMEDIATELY AFTER she found her partner Edwyn Collins lying on the floor of their north London home semi-conscious, unable to speak, his face lopsided, his body contorted, Grace Maxwell didn't get much sleep. But when she did, she would dream, and in those dreams the musician and former Orange Juice frontman wouldn't be sick. "He was back to normal," she recalls, sitting in the front room of that same house in Kilburn, four years after that evening in 2005. "You know when you've had a bad dream and you wake up and whoosh, it's just a dream," she says. "This was the reverse. I remember coming out of a sleep and having to accustom myself to what was happening. Every time you closed your eyes you had to open them again and reacquaint yourself with the horror of what was going on."

Collins had suffered a brain haemorrhage. It was a Sunday and Antiques Roadshow was on the television. The following Friday he slipped into a coma and another bleed was discovered. Against the odds, he lived, but survival was not without its costs. The two haemorrhages had scoured a path through his brain, destroying connective tissue like a river in flood washing away bridges. Communication to the right side of his body was gone, leaving him completely dependent on others for all physical functions. He was diagnosed with aphasia, a condition that left him bereft of words, bereft even of memories. In those days, Maxwell faced the loss of her partner and the father of her teenage son, Will.

That  was then. Today Grace Maxwell is bustling around, making tea, asking Will to turn his music down so she can hear herself think. He looks the spit of his father way back when."I've got to watch I don't project the young Edwyn on to him too much and go, Oh that's so like your dad'."
.......

These days Grace Maxwell is allowing herself to dream again. She has a plan - a vague plan for a woollen future. She wants to move out of London, up to the north of Scotland and Helmsdale where the couple have a house now. "Edwyn loves London," she says. "He thinks his work is in London. My theory is if I can shift the work to the north of Scotland then we can both get what we want, which for me is some sheep. There it is. Some sheep."

Just over a year after Collins's first stroke Grant McLennan, singer of the Australian band The Go-Betweens, died of a heart attack at his home in Brisbane. He had once shared a record label with Collins. They even shared a flat in London at one point. His death was a huge shock to Collins, says Maxwell. "He kept returning to thinking about Grant and the randomness, the arbitrariness of it. He goes: Grant died and I got to live, so when you're here you need to love your life and enjoy it' and that's what he's doing. Packing it in. Cramming it with stuff."

She knows what he means. Of course she does. This is her story as well as his. "When you come out the other end you want to make plans because there's no point being here and not being happy," she says. "Choose happiness." [rc]

=========================================
What is aphasia?
Aphasia is a total or partial loss of the ability to speak correctly or to understand or comprehend what is being said. It may be caused by brain injury or disease. It's most often caused by a stroke that injures the brain's language center, located on the left side of the brain in most people. Some people with aphasia recover quickly and completely after a stroke. Others may have permanent speech and language problems.
Source: americanheart.com
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Friday, June 26, 2009

Aphasia

June 26, 2009

A condition, caused by neurological damage or disease, in which a person’s previous capacity to understand or express language is impaired. The ability to speak, listen, read, or write may be affected depending on the type of aphasia involved.

In contrast to neurological problems that affect the physical ability to speak or perform other linguistic functions, aphasia involves the mental ability to manipulate speech sounds, vocabulary, grammar, and meaning. There are several different types of aphasia. Each has different symptoms and is caused by damage to a different part of the brain.

The great majority of aphasias are caused by damage to the left hemisphere of the brain, which is the dominant language hemisphere for approximately 95 percent of right-handed people and 60 to 70 percent of left-handed people. Two areas in the left hemisphere—Broca’s area and Wernicke’s area—and the pathways connecting them are especially important to linguistic ability, and damage to these areas is the most common cause of aphasia. Broca’s area, located in the frontal lobe of the left hemisphere, is named for the 19th-century French physician Paul Broca (1824-1880), an early pioneer in the study of lateralization (the specialized functioning of the right and left sides of the brain). Aphasia resulting from damage to this area, called Broca’s aphasia, is characterized by slow, labored, “telegraphic” speech, from which common grammatical function words, such as prepositions and articles, are missing (“I went doctor”). In general, however, comprehension of spoken and written language is relatively unaffected.

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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Meet the Lingraphica (version 6.0)

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Speaking of Aphasia presents our June newsletter

Speaking of Aphasia presents our June newsletter, in honor of National Aphasia Awareness Month. The subject of this edition is Social Networking for people with Aphasia. Click on the picture at left to learn about Facebook, Twitter, and Skype. Marilyn and Shirley also present in this edition some photos from our annual National Aphasia Association Happy Hour fundraiser, held at Just Jake's in Montclair on June 23rd. We were proud to have as our guest Ellayne Ganzfried, NAA's Executive Director. Have a great summer. We'll see you in the fall!

Speaking of Aphasia presents_-_June_09.pdf
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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Tips for Writing Checks

By Aphasia Expert, Paul Berger

I have aphasia, a language problem from my stroke. This means I have trouble with names, including names of people, names of days of the week, and names of numbers. This can be a problem when writing checks.

I usually pay bills and keep track of my business accounts on the computer. I've been using Quicken since I had my stroke, and most of my check-writing is just a few clicks.

There are times, however, when I need to write a check by hand. Stephanie wrote out a list of the names of numbers for me to use. I've been using it for years, and keep it with my checkbook I take it to the grocery store, shopping mall, restaurant, and any other place I might write a check. Click here to order your own checkbook tip card.

http://www.strokesurvivor.com/tips_for_writing_checks.html

Copyright (c) Paul E. Berger & Stephanie Mensh
Permission is granted to reprint this article
in your newsletter or magazine only with the following byline.

Stroke Survivor
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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

GE Healthcare And Its Partners Launch Major Stroke Campaign With The Support From China's Ministry Of Health

GE Healthcare and China’s Ministry of Health announced today the official kick off of the “Stroke Prevention and Control Project” organized by the Chinese Association of Geriatrics Research, the Chinese Health Development Foundation and GE Healthcare. The project aims to build a national stroke prevention and control network in China in an effort to reduce stroke incidence and mortality rates, improve people's health and quality of life as well as to reduce the stroke-related cost burden for the country.

Learning from successful experiences of the United States and other countries as well as from years of practical results generated in collaboration between China and the United States, this project will be supported by the latest and most advanced GE Healthcare technologies in stroke diagnosis and treatment. The project will also include epidemiology research regarding the causes of stroke, physician training and public education campaigns about primary and secondary prevention of stroke.

Stroke is an acute cerebrovascular disease that is known for its high incidence, morbidity and mortality rates. According to the third Chinese survey on causes of death, cerebrovascular disease has become the top killer in China, with mortality rates four to five times higher than Europe and the United States, 3.5 times higher than Japan, and even higher than Thailand, India and other developing countries. According to over 20 years of statistics on stroke from Beijing Anzhen Hospital, 27% of these registered events were fatal and the majority of stroke survivors suffered permanent disabilities such as hemiplegia and aphasia, severely affecting their quality of life. At present, the annual cost of treatment for cerebrovascular disease is over RMB12Bn, which, when added to a variety of indirect economic lost due to this disease, brings total annual expenditures to nearly RMB20 billion.

Chen Zhu, China´s Minister of Health, said: “Stroke causes serious harm to victims and poses a heavy burden to the patient’s families. There is a need for early detection of high-risk groups and appropriate intervention. We are proud to lead the “Stroke Prevention and Control Project” in China providing greater efficiency and a fast and great return on investment for our healthcare system”. Chen also called on the country's healthcare professionals and journalists to adhere to a preventive philosophy, educating and disseminating information that can help reduce the incidence and mortality of cerebrovascular disease in China. “This project has been considered to be listed as a significant initiative into ‘Healthy China 2020 Strategy’ ", he added.

"Stroke early diagnosis and intervention has been a neglected national health project. We should take action on stroke early detection and intervention guidelines and technical standards and physician training. All provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities should establish at least one stroke detection and intervention center for screening among high-risk populations within three years, so as to reduce the incidence of cerebrovascular disease and mortality in China," says Wang Longde, Member of National People's Congress Standing Committee, former Vice Minister of China’s Ministry of Health and President of Chinese Association of Geriatrics Research.

China Health Development Foundation Chairman, Wang Yanfeng, said, “This is a project designed to protect people's health. The Foundation, together with other partners, will co-drive and support this project”. He also suggested to establish a specialized foundation for stroke prevention and control and called on the whole society to provide support for this foundation.

"The stroke project is an important part of GE’s healthymagination initiative in China and we look forward, under the leadership of the Ministry of Health, to helping drive early diagnosis and treatment of stroke in China, and then fulfilling our commitment of reducing health care costs, increasing access and improving quality," said George Cao, General Manager of Greater China Marketing and Enterprise Business, GE Healthcare.

"For stroke patients, the key is to ensure patients get accurate diagnoses and treatment as soon as possible. However, there is currently some gap between what county hospitals can provide and the requirement by clinical guidelines for stroke diagnosis and treatment. Our vision is that in the future, those 2,000 Chinese counties and county-level cities are able to provide early diagnosis for high-risks as well as comprehensive treatment service to patients in rural area. In this regard, affordable medical technology, and continued education and training program would be critical. GE will work with partners to continue the efforts in solving these challenges." To date, GE has provided medical equipment and project start-up funding worth RMB2 million for this project.

Wang Longde added, "This work needs to be run by the Government and must include broad community participation. We are glad to see that the Ministry of Health continues to show strong support for this project, and considers the stroke prevention and control project as a major part of the ‘Healthy China 2020 Strategy’. I hope that the healthcare professionals, the media and the society work together to improve people’s health and reduce the suffering and heavy burden this disease brings upon patients and their families”.
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Family finds hope while watching Aphasia Center grow

by Kathleen Thurber
Midland Reporter-Telegram
Published: Tuesday, June 23, 2009 1:15 AM CDT
As their 6-year-old granddaughter traipsed back to the Aphasia Center of West Texas' conference room with a cartoon of milk and handful of Cheetos one recent afternoon, Ronnie Davis laughed slightly and said the center has become their family's second home.

"Everyone spoils her here," she said, smiling as she opened a scrapbook in front of her husband Gary, who's been a member at the Aphasia Center since its beginning at Trinity Towers in 2002.

Gary Davis -- known by granddaughter Maddie Hansen as Papa Gary -- pointed as they flipped through scrapbooks of his younger days where he stood next to cars like his Shelby Mustang and then to more recent photos where he and Maddie sat by others from the Aphasia Center on a field trip to Lubbock.

Nearly every day but Friday, said its Executive Director Kathryn Shelley, Davis is the first one in the center's doors. And whether it's the conversation workshops he thrives on or the exercise classes Davis indicated by wavering his hand are not his favorite, the aphasia survivor has built a new life at the center where he now spends about 16 hours a week.

Since joining, the center has twice moved to a larger facility and has grown from primarily a speech therapy resource to a place for everything from speech therapy to book groups to simply a place to have lunch.


"We found this and this was exactly what we needed," Ronnie Davis said. Gary shook his head and made a slight grunting noise to indicate he agreed.

When Gary Davis suffered an aneurysm while in his garden in late 2001, neither he nor Ronnie had ever heard the word 'aphasia.'

But, when Gary Davis woke up in the hospital five weeks after having surgery for the aneurysm and was unable to communicate, they were forced to learn about the condition.

"It was a complete shock," she said.

Aphasia, which affects about 100,000 new people in America every year, is characterized by a reduction in speech, reading, writing and sometimes understanding spoken language and usually is experienced after a left side brain injury often caused by a stroke or aneurysm. For some, like Davis, it leaves survivors with few if any words and a difficulty reading and writing. For others, some speech is regained, but communication as they'd known it before often is not ever completely restored.

Initially, Davis was sent to Austin for rehabilitation and then was moved to Midland before being transferred to outpatient care.

Like others with aphasia, said speech pathologist at the center Beth Crawford, he was given only short-term therapy at home. Insurance usually covers 19 days of traditional speech therapy after a stroke, she said.

"In traditional therapy you don't have longevity," Crawford said. "It's necessary and it's the place to start; it's just not the place to end."

Looking for another option, Ronnie Davis said, they found the Aphasia Center of West Texas, a non-profit unlike many others nationwide that was just planting its roots.

At first, said communication coach Shun Kelley, Gary was reluctant to attempt communicating and made very little noise.


Now, she said, laughing as she glanced over at him, he's outspoken, opinionated and can run the conversation despite his lack of words.

Davis smiled again and shook his head as Ronnie Davis said his stubborn nature is one thing that hasn't wavered.

"We've been married almost 40 years, so I can pretty much read his mind and he can read mine," Ronnie Davis said.

Still, she said, when things pop up she can't understand, they've learned to leave it and come back later instead of further frustrating themselves -- a situation Gary vigorously agreed by widening his eyes and shaking his head yes does sometimes happen.

In addition to offerings for Gary, Ronnie said she also attends a monthly support session for families where they can swap stories about what does and doesn't work when dealing with the disease.

"We lost a lot of friends and acquaintances," she said, describing the period after his diagnosis. "But all of our new friends here have made up the difference."

Shelley and Crawford said one of the common misconceptions about aphasia is that the person has changed or become less intelligent. Gary, they said, is a prime example of how that's not true, as his ability to move and speak the way he did are gone, but the essence of who Gary is and always was is evident in his daily interactions.

Maddie looked back over at her grandfather and listed off activities she remembers doing at the center, including watching a movie, playing dominoes and sneaking a ride with Papa Gary on his scooter.

She may not be able to technically describe to others what aphasia is, Ronnie Davis said, but unlike so many people, she definitely understands.

For their family and others who've found the center, she said, the disappointment of dealing with the condition is countered by the victories they've experienced since.

"He says 'I love you Ronnie' every night," Ronnie Davis said, tilting her head toward her husband as he turned to face her and attempted to repeat the phrase.

Kathleen Thurber can be reached at kthurber@mrt.com.

Celebrate Aphasia Awareness Month at the Aphasia Center of West Texas' open house Wednesday from 4 to 6 p.m., 5214 Thomason Drive. For more information call 699-1261 or visit www.AphasiaWTx.org.
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Saturday, June 20, 2009

Des Moines teen helps dad deal with stages of living

By JARED STRONG • jstrong@dmreg.com • June 20, 2009

Joseph Kearney crinkles the corner of his mouth and thumbs through the list of medical terms he must know for a test the next week.

Aphasia. It's a sudden inability to understand words, caused by disease or brain injury.

This is how the husky, soft-spoken 17-year-old spends time before class two days each week at the Mercy College library in downtown Des Moines.

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If all goes according to plan, Kearney will be a certified nursing assistant in seven weeks.

Remembering what cerumen means - it's earwax - is the tough part.

Kearney knows from experience that not everything goes as planned. And that's why he is already several steps ahead of his classmates.

He's learned how to help someone who's bedridden avoid harmful sores. He's learned how to increase blood flow to paralyzed legs.

Most important, he's learned to help his incapacitated father find purpose in life.

Soon he'll walk where Dad can't.


"There are five stages of death and dying," instructor Cindy Vincent tells the 20 or so nursing students.

Kearney already knows the stages. Denial. Anger. Depression.

But he's seen them in someone who is living - his father, Joseph Sr.

It began more than five years ago on a freeway in suburban Minneapolis. Joseph Sr. was dozing in the passenger seat when a friend fell asleep at the wheel on the way back to Des Moines after an overnight trip.

The car careened through a guardrail, leveled a light pole and rolled three times into some water. The right front wheel was pushed into Joseph Sr.'s seat. Joseph Sr.'s spinal cord was severed.

His son was 12 at the time. There are two words he remembers more than anything after his dad's release from the hospital nine months later: "Why me?" Joseph Sr. often asked.

That's the anger stage.


The crash stretched the family's already-thin finances.

In the year before the accident, Joseph Sr. had several run-ins with the law, mostly for petty theft.

"We were really having a rough time. It was a weird year," he recalls.

Joseph Sr., 42, had been a nursing assistant and aspired to be a registered nurse. The wrong crowd made his dream difficult. The crash made it impossible.

He and his wife, Lasandra, filed for bankruptcy six months later and moved themselves and Joseph Jr. and his brother, Alonzo, 15, from their rented home on Des Moines' south side to a one-bedroom apartment in West Des Moines.

Lasandra Kearney, 43, sorted mail at the post office more than 80 hours a week to save for a down payment on a home, which she bought in less than a year.

Joseph Jr. became his father's primary caregiver. The teenager juggled the added responsibility with schoolwork and, later, a part-time job at McDonald's.

Father and son grew close. Topics such as girls became easier to talk about. Joseph Jr. looked to his future. Caring for his father gave him a passion for nursing. Maybe, he thought, he could be Dr. Kearney some day.

"Days will be rough if you don't go to college," Dad told him. "College won't be easy, but once you make it, you make it."


On this Father's Day, Joseph Jr. will wake up at 6 a.m. and get his dad ready for church.

He'll rub lotion on Joseph Sr.'s paralyzed legs and look them over for signs of sores. The two will struggle to put on special leggings that will help Joseph Sr.'s blood circulation. Dad will breathe heavily from the effort.

Next the pants. Then the shoes. This is the daily routine at their Des Moines home.

"One, two, three," Joseph Sr. will count as father and son combine their strength to scoot the older man's 300 pounds to the edge of the bed and into a motorized wheelchair.

They go to the bathroom, where Joseph Jr. helps his father wash. In the afternoon, Joseph Jr. will head to McDonald's, where he works about 30 hours each week. The schedule leaves little room to be a football-loving kid.

By JARED STRONG • jstrong@dmreg.com • June 20, 2009

Joseph Jr. attended school during the summers to graduate early from Lincoln High School. A state Department of Labor grant will cover the $1,100 cost of his nurse's assistant certificate. He plans to start work at a nursing home in August and continue with college classes.

The last five years may not have taught Joseph Jr. how to define such words as aphasia and cerumen, but they did show him how to define his life.

"It's a big journey," Joseph Sr. said. "I want what every father wants, you know? I want him to achieve more than I did. I want him to do things that I couldn't.

"Hell, one day he may find the cure for me."

That's the acceptance stage.


photo

Joseph Kearney Jr. helps his father bathe in the family’s wheelchair-accessible bathroom. Joseph Sr. had once been a nursing assistant and aspired to be a registered nurse.

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Friday, June 19, 2009

Lingraphica Introduces the SmallTalk Mobile Accessory for Aphasia

19/06/2009 - 16:02

Lingraphica, maker of the Lingraphica speech-generating device for aphasia, announces the release of the SmallTalk mobile accessory. Incredibly portable and light, it fits easily into a pocket or purse for communication and practice on the go. Users can take along a selection of phrases, icons, and videos to have with them at all times. Together, the Lingraphica speech-generating device and the SmallTalk provide a comprehensive system for aphasia communication and recovery.

The SmallTalk is ideal for use in everyday situations such as restaurants, doctor’s appointments, phone conversations, or emergencies. Users can also cue themselves to speak by putting on earphones and playing phrases so that only they can hear them.

The result of a yearlong intensive design project by Lingraphica’s developers and programmers, the SmallTalk fulfills the company’s goal to take the key capabilities of the Lingraphica and compress them into a convenient handheld device. It is built on the Apple iPod touch, but can be ordered directly from the company as an accessory to the Lingraphica. For those who already have an iPod touch, a demo set of icons and videos can be downloaded from the Apple App Store for free by selecting SmallTalk for Aphasia. Users will need to have a Lingraphica to take full advantage of the SmallTalk’s capabilities and create a personalized version of the SmallTalk.

“The release of the SmallTalk takes us to the next level in our comprehensive approach to aphasia,” says Lingraphica CEO Andrew Gomory. “Adding the benefits of portability to the unlimited communication and practice opportunities that the Lingraphica offers is an important part of our ongoing mission to improve the lives of our users. We’re proud to be able to present it.”

Lingraphica-The Aphasia Company™ is the leading provider of speech-generating devices for people whose ability to speak or understand words has been impaired by a stroke or brain injury. With the Lingraphica they can communicate with picture icons that speak words and phrases in a natural human voice, or they can practice speech using videos and language exercises. The Lingraphica is Medicare reimbursable. It is available, along with the SmallTalk mobile accessory, for a no-obligation trial. For more information call 888-APHASIA (888-274-2742) or visit www.lingraphica.com.

Lingraphica Introduces the SmallTalk Mobile Accessory for AphasiaSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Support: and Link:

Support which you to be called Groups: http://aphasianyc.org/Groups.htm
Link: http://aphasianyc.org/Link.htm

I have already updated these two pages.

Support:

  • Find More Aphasia Support Groups
  • Aphasia Centers Around the World
  • Aphasia Organizations
Link:
  • All else
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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

NYC Marathon Entries Open for National Stroke Association

National Stroke Association is proud and honored to be among the New York Road Runner’s Participating Charity Partners for the 2009 ING New York City Marathon on November 1, 2009! National Stroke Association will provide 25 guaranteed marathon entries to runners who pledge to either donate or raise $2500 or more.

Do not miss this exclusive opportunity to challenge yourself to run one of the most exciting and inspiring marathon’s in the United States and raise funds that will help National Stroke Association continue working toward reducing the impact and incidence of stroke!

For more information about this opportunity and to apply for an entry to the National Stroke Association NYC Marathon team, visit www.stroke.org/nymarathon.

Already registered with an entry to the marathon? Join the National Stroke Association NYC Marathon team now by visiting www.stroke.org/nymarathon and pledge to donate or raise at least $250 for National Stroke Association.

Deadline for entries is July 10, 2009. Runners chosen for the National Stroke Association team will be notified by July 17, 2009. For additional information, contact Carol Griffin at cgriffin@stroke.org or (303) 754-0917.


ING New York Marathon

NYC Marathon Entries Open for National Stroke AssociationSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The National Aphasia Association Celebrates Awareness Month 2009



The National Aphasia Association Celebrates Awareness Month 2009
NYSE09
Dear NAA Friends,

Along with wishing everyone a very happy National Aphasia Awareness Month, we would like to also share a few exciting announcements.

As you can see from the photo above, the NAA had the privilege of being invited to ring the Opening Bell at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) this morning, June 16th, 2009! NAA Board Members, Staff and friends were included in this very special event, and we would like to extend our deepest gratitude to the NYSE for giving us this opportunity. If you would like to see the video, click here.

We cannot truly celebrate Awareness Month without an official Proclamation, can we? On Monday, June 8th, 2009, Congress passed Senate Resolution 172, proclaiming June 2009 as National Aphasia Awareness Month! We are indebted to Senator Tim Johnson yet again for his for his sponsorship and efforts to bring this resolution to fruition once again. We would also like to thank NAA Board member, Dr. Paul Rao, for spearheading this effort. We have also received a proclamation here in NYC from Mayor Bloomberg! Remember - there's still time to get Proclamations made by your city and state governments! If you would like to know how to do it in your locality, reply to this email.

We're not done yet! The NAA was also given the opportunity to provide information for a special section in The Washington Times, which announces June as National Aphasia Awareness Month. We were quite impressed with how it turned out! We encourage you all to approach your local newpapers about including a special section such as this. To see the section, click here.

It is exciting times like these that remind of us how important it is to spread the word about aphasia. We are grateful that we are able to share them with you, and we look forward to hearing how you have also celebrated National Aphasia Awareness Month.

Wishing you a very Happy Aphasia Awareness Month,

Ellayne Ganzfried, Executive Director
Amy Coble, Info/Admin Coordinatorb
NAA Executive & Advisory Board Members
The National Aphasia Association Celebrates Awareness Month 2009SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Accomplishments and Games on aphasianyc.org

Anybody can email support@aphasianyc.org to email accomplishment(s) in relationship to Aphasia.
http://aphasianyc.org/Accomplishments.htm
Your accomplishment(s) will be okay by Dorothy E. Ross, Ph.D., CCC-SLP.

Anybody can email support@aphasianyc.org to email game(s) in relationship to Aphasia or Cognitive.
http://aphasianyc.org/games.htm


Your email upon receiving by email from accomplishments or games will be deleted forever.
http://aphasianyc.org/privacy.htm
Accomplishments and Games on aphasianyc.orgSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Coping with aphasia


From Washington state to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota, Yuman Joseph Boze likes to travel.

But his plans were put on hold after he suffered a stroke in March 2008.

Now Boze has been diagnosed with aphasia, a disorder that affects people's communication skills.

Corinna Atchly, a speech language pathologist with Yuma Rehab, said there are two types of aphasia: receptive and expressive.

Receptive, she said, affects a patient's ability to understand and make sense of what he or she reads, hears or sees. Patients with expressive aphasia, she said, have difficulty verbalizing wants and needs, have trouble writing or making gestures.

Even though aphasia is typically associated with stroke, patients that have experienced brain trauma and injury, as well as some patients with dementia, can also be diagnosed with the disorder.

Boze experiences both receptive and expressive and about a year ago, after his stroke, he was unable to speak.

"In the beginning, he couldn't even say my name," said Boze's close friend, Judy Denny.

After finding a good therapist at Yuma Rehab, Boze plans to continue therapy at the facility.

Even though Boze said he sometimes may not be able to find the word he's looking for, with the one-on-one therapy, he's making progress.

"I just wish I could get more speech," he said.

Boze used to attend therapy three times a week, and now he's down to once a week.

"He's come a long way from where he's begun," Denny said.

One common misconception about patients with aphasia, Atchly said, is people think the patient has lost his or her intelligence.

"It doesn't affect your intelligence at all."

And that's often the root of a patient's frustration, she said. "They know what they want to say, they just can't do it."

She said patients often shy away from activities they used to do.

For Boze, it's not if, but when he'll get back on the road and resume his travel plans. He said his next trip will be to North Carolina to see his son whom he hasn't seen in 30 years.

"We're not done yet," Boze said.
Coping with aphasiaSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

WWRC Aphasia Therapy

Communication Services offers a full range of Speech-Language Pathology Services for individuals with communication disorders. Emphasis is placed on an interdisciplinary approach to evaluation and treatment of patients, with a broad range of specialists being available for consultation. All speech-language pathologists and audiologists providing services through the department are licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia and hold the Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language-Hearing ociation (ASHA).

VIDEO

http://www.audiologyminnesota.com/speech-pathology-audiology/wwrc-aphasia-therapy



WWRC Aphasia TherapySocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Saturday, June 13, 2009

How to help a loved one suffering from aphasia

By Renee Vecksler

For Pacific Sunday News

June 14, 2009

June is Aphasia Awareness Month. Aphasia is a loss of language skills, one of the disabilities that can result from a stroke. Language problems usually result from damage to the left temporal and parietal lobes of the brain.

People who have a stroke or brain injury are tested for aphasia by a speech therapist, who is an expert trained in speech rehabilitation. The goals of speech therapy are to find and increase the patient's strengths in order to improve understanding between the patient and family.

People with aphasia may not be able to express their thoughts or understand others. A person with aphasia may:

  • mix up the order of words in a sentence,

  • speak using only nouns and verbs,

  • use the wrong words or made up words,

  • have trouble working with numbers, such a when balancing a checkbook.

    Rehabilitation can help the patient use language again. If your loved one has aphasia, try the following tips to make communicating easier:

  • Ask questions that can be answered with a "yes" or "no."

  • Speak in simple sentences. Stick to one idea and one action.

  • Speak slowly and clearly. Give the person time to understand and to respond.

  • Try not to speak for the person unless it is necessary.

  • Praise any efforts the person makes to speak.

  • Keep the person involved and informed. Spend time reading to your loved one or talking about your day.

    Services are enhancing and growing. Plans are under way to form outpatient group language therapy sessions at Guam Memorial Hospital and the Skilled Nursing Unit. For further details, please call GMHA Rehabilitation at 647-2275 or 647-5405.

    Scientists at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke predict that Americans should be able to prevent 80 percent of all strokes. Having a better understanding of the causes of stroke has helped Americans to reduce the risks of stroke by using currently available therapies and developing new ones. Some of the most important treatable risk factors for stroke are: high blood pressure, cigarette smoking, heart disease, warning signs or history of stroke, diabetes.

    Remember to call 911 right away if you observe one or more of the signs of a "brain attack," even if the warning signs last only a few moments. Warning signs are clues that your brain is not receiving enough oxygen and may be a sign of a serious condition that won't go away without medical help. Free materials, such as the "Brain Basics" and "Hope Through Research" pamphlets, and the "Post-Stroke Rehabilitation" brochure, are available from the NINDS.

    Renee Veksler is a Guam Memorial Hospital health educator and a community partner with the Get Healthy Guam Coalition. www.gethealthyguam.org

  • How to help a loved one suffering from aphasiaSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    Wednesday, June 10, 2009

    Stroke survivor talks the talk

    By
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH

    Bill Sanford had spent his life as a speaker, whether as a lawyer arguing a court case, or a negotiator hammering out union contracts.

    So his inability to speak after suffering a stroke in June 2007 was more devastating than the paralysis. "I couldn't say anything. I couldn't write . . . it was terrible," he said. "Anything people said to me, I could understand, but I couldn't respond.

    "My speech was my strong suit, and I could say nothing."

    Sanford was used to a fight, however. He grew up in a St. Louis neighborhood, "... where everybody was going to the slammer."


    An alcoholic father punched him, around and his mother was sick and silent. He freed himself at 16, determined not to live the life he'd fled.

    He finished high school, then worked in a steel plant to put himself through college and law school.

    Those days, he said, molded him and taught him. "Sitting on your butt gets you nowhere," he said. "I made my mind up; I was going to get well."

    Sanford's stroke caused what's called aphasia, a condition that took away his ability to speak. Some people with aphasia can't speak or understand language, even though their intelligence is intact.

    "That's like suddenly being dropped in the middle of a foreign country," he said. "No one understands you, and you can't understand anyone."

    About 20 percent to 30 percent of people who survive a stroke wrestle with some degree of aphasia.

    Barnes-Jewish Hospital moved him to Barnes-Jewish Extended Care facility in Clayton.

    Therapists worked with him. His sister, Anita Hicks of Detroit, visited and drilled him on speech incessantly. But more than that, he worked on himself.

    He read the newspaper out loud every day, starting with comics and their short word-bubbles. Then, the articles.

    He regained his faculties steadily.

    About six months ago, he joined a new support group at the outpatient facility at Barnes-Jewish Extended Care program in Clayton. It was called the Aphasia Conversation Connection.

    Sanford and six others met weekly to share their experiences with aphasia, or anything else.

    On a recent day, Sanford brought maps of walking trails in Illinois. Sanford walks more than a mile a day; he lifts weights and exercises, too. He has lost 40 pounds since his stroke. The group wanted to know of places to go.

    Next, Werner Bauer, who at 80-plus years old was the elder of the group, told of his days as a "90-day wonder" Navy lieutenant commander on the battleship West Virginia anchored at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. He's alive, he said, because the ship didn't roll when a half dozen enemy torpedoes hit it. Instead, it sank 15 feet where it sat on the bottom of the shallow harbor.

    Bauer spoke very slowly. His sentences made sense to everyone at the table, and no one judged when they didn't; they even laughed together.

    Corky Bahr, 65, told of how her granddaughter became a teacher from ages 3 to 6, reading with grandma, making grandma say the right words, for three years.

    "It's a friendly environment where no one judges," said Cathy Huel, rehabilitation supervisor at the center.

    Huel listens to the conversations and writes key words on a pad, then holds them up during the exchanges so members have triggers to keep them on track.

    When the meeting ended, an appointed spokesman said for the group, "We're all grateful for our spouses."

    Sanford's speech is slow but otherwise unhampered. "I get a little better every month," he said.

    He's writing a family history and carries a small tape recorder and notes to store ideas. He travels with his wife, Doris.

    He has a bit of advice for people who face the challenge of coming back from stroke or head injury:

    "Never give up, no matter what," he said. "Keep going, keep going, keep going."
    Stroke survivor talks the talkSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    Tuesday, June 9, 2009

    NY1 Theater Review: "Night Sky" VIDEO

    By: Roma Torre

    "Night Sky" is a heavy-handed play by Susan Yankowitz that is playing off-Broadway at the Baruch Performing Arts Center. NY1's Roma Torre filed the following review.

    They're not quite as pervasive as cases of swine flu, but disease-of-the-week dramas do tend to come in clusters. Jane Fonda's "33 Variations" is the most notable this year and "Night Sky," which is performing off-Broadway at the Baruch Performing Arts Center, is the latest example. The ailment in question is aphasia, defined as the loss of speech caused by a brain injury.

    While "Night Sky" follows a fairly predictable course, this well-intentioned work is not without merit, namely a towering lead performance.

    The story follows Anna, an astronomer and college professor who lives with her teenage daughter and fiance in New York City. She exhibits all the dramatic trappings of a woman destined for a fall. Overworked and unappreciated, she runs from her home after an argument one night and is struck by a car. The resulting brain injury leaves her unable to communicate normally.

    Angry and frustrated at first, she is forced to relearn speech while discovering new forms of expression and eventually gaining a healthier perspective on her life and family.

    "Night Sky" was commissioned by Open Theater founder Joseph Chaikin after his own affliction with aphasia. Playwright Susan Yankowitz tackled the job in earnest, attempting to find parallels between the murky mysteries of the brain and the cosmos, but the result is alternately compelling and formulaic.

    Director Daniella Topol keeps the action moving nicely with scenes blending seamlessly into each other, but she also suffers occasionally from acute heavy-handedness.

    The performances are uniformly strong, especially with the outstanding Jordan Baker, who was last seen in the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Three Tall Women" 15 years ago. Even when the writing turns cliche, Anna seems real. And there are moments when Baker's mastery of technique in playing this severely-impaired woman leaves the audience at a loss for words.

    "Night Sky" reaches for the stars, but even with Baker's fine work, this ambitious play is more decidedly earthbound.

    VIDEO http://www.ny1.com/Content/ny1_living/100493/ny1-theater-review---night-sky-/Default.aspx

    NY1 Theater Review: "Night Sky" VIDEOSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    West Side Aphasia Group NEW SCHEDULE

    During June, July and August, the West Side Aphasia Group will move to a summer schedule of once a month.

    Though we will send out meeting notices, please mark your calendars:

    June 24th
    July 29th
    August 26th

    In mid-September, we will return to a weekly schedule. Have a great su
    mmer!

    Helen Rubinstein

    HR:AM
    West Side Aphasia Group NEW SCHEDULESocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    Monday, June 8, 2009

    Sign-up Now: Free 2009-2010 Stroke Risk Factor Calendar

    SAM 2009 - Home page image


    National Stroke Association wants to thank everyone for participating in National Stroke Awareness Month in May! This year’s educational campaign was unprecedented for individual participation -- we saw significant increases in individual fundraising events, in online education and dialogue through our Facebook and Twitter webpages and in personal efforts to host awareness events held across the country in hospitals, churches, schools and other facilities or community centers.

    Stroke awareness and educational activities are important all year long, and nothing is more important than effectively managing your individual health.

    To help you stay on track beyond May, National Stroke Association has developed a FREE 2009-2010 STOP Stroke Pocket Calendar to help you and loved one’s stay on top of stroke risk factor management all year long. Sign-up NOW for your FREE calendar by visiting www.stroke.org/SAM_calendar_request.*

    2009 Pocket Calendar

    Forward this e-mail onto friends and family so they can register, too! We hope the calendar regularly inspires good health and stroke prevention through the entire year.

    Thank you, and we look forward to another successful National Stroke Awareness Month in May 2010!

    P.S. Ask all of your friends and family to join our Facebook and Twitter pages now and receive regular educational posts and the opportunity for great discussion among members all year long!

    *One pocket calendar per person while supplies last.

    Sign-up Now: Free 2009-2010 Stroke Risk Factor CalendarSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    Sunday, June 7, 2009

    Bridging aphasia-based language gaps

    ECU offers free support group

    Staff Writer

    Nestled on the fourth floor of the East Carolina University Health Sciences Building is a room where those suffering from aphasia have found a safe haven.

    "(Aphasia's) an impairment of language, the ability to use and comprehend words, Sherri Winslow, clinical supervisor for the ECU's Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, said. "It includes talking, listening, understanding, reading, writing and numbers - all of those things relate to language."

    East Carolina University's Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders began hosting free aphasia support groups during March.

    "One of the main purposes (of the group) is getting people together because some of those with aphasia may tend not to try to attempt to communicate out in public or with other people," Sherri Winslow, clinical supervisor for the department, said. "It's a comfortable place for those making attempts to communicate."

    Half of the meeting is designated for attendees to practice communication with graduate students.

    "The students think of activities to lead the group in practicing expressive and listening comprehension skills," Winslow said.

    During each meeting individuals also participate in discussions on relevant topics and receive presentations about maintaining a healthy lifestyle after stroke.

    Family members of those with aphasia are also encouraged to attend the support group.

    "They could see different techniques that the students are using to help elicit the language," Winslow said. "Especially if some of them don't get to come to therapy sessions with the person. They get to see how to encourage and motivate the language skills."

    Sarah Campbell can be reached at (252) 559-1076 or at scampbell@freedomenc.com.

    Upcoming meetings

    June 17, July 1, July 15 and July 29

    All meetings held from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. in Room 4415 in the Health Sciences Building on West Fifth Street in Greenville. For more information about the aphasia support group call Sherri Winslow at (252) 744-6142.

    Did you know?

    Aphasia is an acquired communication disorder that impairs an individual's ability to use language.

    Although a person with aphasia can have difficulty retrieving words and names, memory of situations, appointments, people and general knowledge remain relatively intact. The ability to access ideas and thoughts via language is disrupted.

    It has been estimated that one million Americans or 1 in 250 people have acquired aphasia. About 2/3 of these are the result of strokes and 1/3 are head injured persons.

    Source: National Aphasia Association

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    Saturday, June 6, 2009

    Science of speech

    Speech is one important faculty that distinguishes humans from the rest of the animal world. Insights into how speech is hardwired into the brain began with Paul Broca’s discovery in the 19th century that the left cerebral hemisphere is primarily involved in the speech process. Over the years, various researchers have found several pathways that explain aspects of speech, but neuroscience now seems to be heading towards a unified theory of speech function in the brain.
    Josef Rauschecker, PhD, with co-author Sophie Scott, has reviewed fMRI studies on humans and physiological and anatomical studies on non-human primates, and published his conclusions in the June issue of Nature Neuroscience. fMRI enables scientists to watch activity inside the brain. Animal studies mainly involved a technique called single-cell recording, wherein changes within a single neuron can be observed. The paper suggests that there are two parallel pathways that control speech function in the brain. These speech loops run from lower to higher-function neural regions.

    The two pathways—“what” and “where”, as the authors call them—start in the auditory cortex located in the temporal lobe. The “what" pathway processes complex auditory signals and then sends them forward to the “where” pathway. The “where” pathway, located in the parietal lobe just below the temporal lobe, processes the spatial aspect of sound. It also provides feedback in speech production.

    Determining the speech and language loops in the brain would help in devising treatments for disorders like autism and schizophrenia.

    In 1861, Broca autopsied a patient who had speech problems while alive. He found irregularities in the frontal cortex (Broca’s Area) of the patient’s l
    eft hemisphere. Problems associated with Broca’s Area lead to inability in speaking, known as Broca’s aphasia. Patients with Broca’s aphasia can understand what they hear but are unable to speak.

    Then another scientist, Wernicke, in 1876, found that damage to the posterior portion of the temporal lobe (Wernicke’s Area) causes problems in comprehending speech.

    These two areas of the brain are connected by arcuate fasciculus, a band of nerve fibres. Damage to this area causes conduction aphasia, wherein the patient can understand language but his speech doesn’t make sense.

    Various models have been proposed to describe the speech pathway in the brain. American neurologist Norman Geschwind came up with the “connectionist” model in the 1960s. According to this model, the speech loop was centralised—between Broca’s and Wernicke’s Areas. Wernicke’s Area processed auditory signals and relayed them to Broca’s Area, which finally processed speech. Recent studies however seem to contradict this and other older models where the speech function is centralised. They are of view that speech function is spread across various anatomical structures in the brain, rather than being localised at two primary centres.

    There’s place for Broca’s and Wernicke’s Areas in the new theory of speech but the authors don’t buy into the theory that these two are the only governing areas. “Essentially we are saying that ‘Wernicke’s Area’ encompasses much more than the posterior superior temporal lobe, which is where people generally put Wernicke’s Area in the brain,” says Scott, Wellcome Senior Fellow, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, London. “In terms of Broca’s Area, we show that it is connected to speech perception areas in two ways—receiving bottom-up information from auditory areas and sending projections back to auditory areas.”

    Science of speechSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    Aphasia NYC Blogger: Aphasia NYC Blogger: PHOTO CALL: Jordan Baker is Star in a Night Sky Off-Broadway

    Aphasia NYC Blogger: Aphasia NYC Blogger: PHOTO CALL: Jordan Baker is Star in a Night Sky Off-Broadway

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/06/theater/reviews/06nigh.html?ref=arts
    Aphasia NYC Blogger: Aphasia NYC Blogger: PHOTO CALL: Jordan Baker is Star in a Night Sky Off-BroadwaySocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    Friday, June 5, 2009

    Touro College Russian-Speaking Aphasia Group

    WELCOME TO THE WEB SITE, APHASIANYC.ORG!

    Next Fall Schedule
    Please call 718-787-1602 x 208 for Fall schedule, as we are not meeting during the summer
    Click here for brochure in Russian

    Dorothy E Ross, PhD CCC-SLP
    dorothyeross@aphasianyc.org
    http://www.aphasianyc.org

    DER:AM
    Touro College Russian-Speaking Aphasia GroupSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    Aphasia NYC Blogger: PHOTO CALL: Jordan Baker is Star in a Night Sky Off-Broadway

    Aphasia NYC Blogger: PHOTO CALL: Jordan Baker is Star in a Night Sky Off-Broadway

    http://www.chelseanow.com/cn_129/wordsescape.html
    Aphasia NYC Blogger: PHOTO CALL: Jordan Baker is Star in a Night Sky Off-BroadwaySocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    PHOTO CALL: Jordan Baker is Star in a Night Sky Off-Broadway

    By Ernio Hernandez

    05 Jun 2009

    Jordan Baker stars in the current Off-Broadway run of Susan Yankowitz's Night Sky at the Baruch Performing Arts Center.

    Daniella Topol directs the production that also features Jim Stanek, Tuck Milligan, Lauren Ashley Carter, Dan Domingues and Maria-Christina Oliveras.

    Night Sky follows "what happens to a bright, articulate astronomer, her family and her career when she is struck by a car and loses her ability to speak conventionally, a condition known as 'aphasia'," as show notes reveal.

    View the Entire Photo Gallery
    Jordan Baker
    Photo by Carol Rosegg

    For more information, visit NightSkyThePlay.com.

    PHOTO CALL: Jordan Baker is Star in a Night Sky Off-BroadwaySocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

    MedicAlert Member News - June 2009

    MedicAlert Member News Header
    MedicAlert® Member News | June 2009
    Feature Story

    Men's Health Awareness Week - June 15 - 21

    BBQ Heart disease and cancer are the leading causes of death for males, but unintentional injuries are responsible for more than 6% of all male deaths every year. Motor vehicle traffic, poisonings, and falls are the leading causes of unintentional injury deaths.

    Many injuries and illnesses can be avoided by following simple safety and health guidelines. Below are some tips to help you stay safe and healthy this summer and all year long.

    • Whether you plan to grill on the patio or picnic in the park, be sure to eat balanced meals with plenty of fruits and vegetables.
    • The summer is a great time to play outdoor games, garden, or walk. Start a new routine that combines fun and physical activity.
    • While it's great to be outside in the summer, protect yourself from sun and heat exposure by drinking plenty of non-alcoholic fluids. Also be sure to wear (and reapply) sunscreen.
    • Wear a helmet when riding a bike or motorcycle, skating, or playing in contact sports.
    • If using fireworks this summer, have a fire extinguisher nearby in case of a fire.*

    For more information about men's health and summer time safety tips, visit the Men's Health page at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.

    *Source: www.cdc.gov/men

    Special Member Offer

    Get Ready for Summer! June Specials

    Get ready for summer fun with limited-time specials on a great selection of styles for both adults and kids, including sports bands and the popular charm bracelet.

    Click here to view specials >>
    Offer ends June 30, 2009. Discount cannot be combined with any other offer.

    Member Story

    Richard's Story

    June Member

    On a warm August evening after returning from their daughter’s home, Richard Vaughn* and his wife, Shirley, decided to have dinner at a local restaurant. Instead, it turned out to be a dining experience they would soon never forget.

    During their meal, a blood clot formed in Richard's leg and traveled to his heart. "I was feeling short of breath and I told my wife to call 9-1-1," Richard recalls. "She made the call and an ambulance took me to a nearby hospital."

    Shirley could not remember all the medications that Richard was taking, so she informed the emergency room staff that Richard had a MedicAlert necklace. One of the nurses called MedicAlert and had Richard’s medical information immediately faxed over. "It's hard to remember everything he takes," Shirley explains. "I was very pleased with MedicAlert's service and I'm sure the emergency room staff appreciated it too."

    The Vaughns first heard about MedicAlert Foundation after their physician recommended it to them following Richard's lung transplant. "I highly recommend your service to anyone with a medical condition," says Richard.

    Millions of people trust MedicAlert to speak for them in an emergency. If you have a MedicAlert story you would like to share with others, tell us your story.

    *Name and image changed to protect member's identity.
    MedicAlert News

    MedicAlert Partners with ASA

    MedicAlert is pleased to announce our partnership with the Autism Society of America (ASA) to provide protection and peace of mind for those with autism through our new program, MedicAlert + Safe and Sound.

    Autism is a complex neurodevelopmental disability that typically appears during an infant's first two years and affects their ability to communicate and interact with others. Autism is increasingly seen as a chronic condition, as people with autism can also have significant medical conditions, which may require emergency medical help. ASA

    MedicAlert + Safe and Sound is specially designed for people living on the autism spectrum and helps reunite families and caregivers with the member in the event of a wandering or medical emergency. To learn more about MedicAlert + Safe and Sound, click here.

    Your Membership

    Need to renew your membership?
    Renewing your membership is easy from your member home page. You can also add the convenience of Auto-Renewal.
    Log in »

    Refer a friend
    Do you know someone who can benefit from MedicAlert membership? Receive a $20 credit when your friend joins MedicAlert!
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