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Volume 43 Number 3, May/June 2006
Pages 367 — 378

Abstract - Word-retrieval treatment in aphasia: Effects of sentence context

Anastasia Raymer, PhD;1-2* Francine Kohen, MS3

1Department of Early Childhood, Speech Pathology, and Special Education, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA; 2Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Rehabilitation Research and Development Brain Rehabilitation Research Center, Malcom Randall VA Medical Center, Gainesville, FL; 3Department of Communication Sciences, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
Abstract — Word-retrieval treatment studies in aphasia have reported the greatest influences on picture naming for trained words. To increase treatment effects to untrained words and sentence contexts, we investigated a sentence-reading treatment hierarchy that moves from errorless to generative production of sentences incorporating target nouns and verbs. In an individual with nonfluent aphasia, treatment resulted in improved picture naming for nouns and verbs and generalized increases in numbers of grammatical sentences and content words following noun therapy. A second individual with fluent aphasia improved little in picture-naming and sentence-generation tasks for both nouns and verbs. This sentence-based word-retrieval training, in which semantic and syntactic processes are engaged, led to improvements in word-retrieval measures during spontaneous sentence generation, but only for the participant with nonfluent aphasia. Contrary to expectations, these changes were greater following noun therapy than they were following verb therapy.
Key words: accident, anomia, aphasia, Broca's aphasia, cerebrovascular, grammar, language, nouns, rehabilitation, speech therapy, verbs.

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