Apraxia: Brain Injury Speech & Reading Recovery

stroke_recovery

Aphasia is a condition where the brain functions, allowing for comprehension and formulation of language are disrupted, creating a difficulty in remembering words or losing the ability to speak. read or write. It is most commonly linked to brain damage usually related to stroke or head trauma.

Most Neuropathology sources and medical journals state that patients presenting with apraxia of speech “must receive multi-modality input or multi-sensory information, including visual, auditory, tactile and kinesthetic feedback, in order to benefit maximally from therapy. Virtually all research has found that visual input is the most important source of feedback for apraxics. This means that patients should be instructed to focus on how their speech sounds, on how it feels to produce speech targets and, most importantly, on how the articulators look during the production of speech targets. To encourage focus on the visual modality, patients should be told to watch as the therapist produces target sounds or words and then to observe their own production of these targets by using a mirror.”

Dabul and Bollier (1976 in Halperen, 1981) outlined the following sequential program:

Mastery of individual consonant phonemes.

Rapid repetition of each consonant plus the vowel /a/.

The buildup of sounds into syllables using CV CV combinations, such as /fa ta/, and CVC combinations such as /p a p/.

Once the patient has a solid base of articulatory positions, he can master words by breaking them down into individual phonemes, then blending them into syllables and words.” (CMSD 642 Neuropathologies of Swallowing and Speech, Patrick McCaffrey Ph.D)

Because the nature of the UniSkript alphabet and accompanying system of learning is a multi-sensory visual, auditory and kinesthetic tool, it is believed by a number of speech pathologists and therapists that this new technology may be one of the best tools for remediation of the articulation issues related to Aphasia and Apraxia of Speech. 

UniSkript Research & Literacy Institute is seeking possible partnership with Universities interested in studying the efficacy of the UniSkript System with these two conditions. It is hoped a clinical study will be launched in this area in 2014.