Time Since Injury: 29 months
Problem: Levi was a young man who sustained a brain injury while stationed in Afghanistan. He experienced frequent seizures but wanted more than anything to just lead a normal life. His aphasia and physical limitations are barriers to this. He was embarrassed by his condition and relentless in his pursuit of progress. He loved to be challenged by the clinicians.
- severely non-fluent speech (“yes” or “no”, or “no, but”)
- great sense of humor
- perfectionist who did not accept praise
- using his phone, he could say one word, but this required the listener to exhaust all meanings
- Repeated sentences independently less than 20% of the time
- Used drawing and writing numbers and applications on his iPhone to speak for him
- At least 80% of the communication burden on the listener
- Listener had to ask many questions to understand the topics
- Conversation was difficult and time-consuming
- His understanding was much better than his speech
Treatment: The military would only support a 4-week program.
By the end of the second week of therapy, he spoke an average of 3-5 words per sentence, up to 7 words. At the end, he produced 5-6 word sentences with help to get started 50% of the time.
On his standardized testing, his speech production increased by 50%, repetition increased by 14%, and his understanding increased by 20%. Reading comprehension of sentences increased by 40%.