Time Since Stroke: 10 months
Jeff was a young man who lost his job as a salesman and his spouse as a result of his stroke and aphasia. Although he couldn’t work, his employer was very active in raising money for his treatment and offered to have him train at a lower position later. He eventually went back to work in a different capacity with the same company.
- wanted to return to work and an independent lifestyle
- limited speech and understanding
- wasn’t aware of some of his limiting behaviors
- sometimes didn’t take therapy seriously
Assessment: Speech communication was approximately 45% intelligible when having a conversation. He spoke in limited sentences with a few spontaneous phrases. Conversation could be difficult due to significant word finding problems, phonological paraphasias and semantic paraphasias . His responses to questions were about 50% off-target due to decreased processing of auditory information, comprehension, and awareness of his behaviors. He frequently gave up during communication breakdowns. He had relatively good cognitive skills.
Treatment: 6 weeks
We taught Jeff to use other strategies to come up with the words he wanted, which really helped the listener understand the topic. His speech communication went from 45% intelligible to 80%. He rehearsed words he would need to say in his job and gave presentations to others about his work. Part of his job was writing down customer information, so he worked to take down phone numbers and messages with 90% accuracy.
His standardized testing showed an increase of 40% in providing relevant information to a listener and a 35% increase in understanding more complicated information. His overall aphasia score increased by 15%. Reading comprehension increased by 20%, and overall reading and writing scores increased by 8%.