Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Picture of Health-Greg Clement - Age 19, Pepperell, MA

I was in a car accident on December 17, 2008, where I sustained a traumatic brain injury, among many other things. The other injuries have healed very well, but I am still in the process of repairing the #1 thing in anyone's body - the brain! I was shown Lumosity by my speech therapist, and it was with the combination of help from all my doctors, therapists, family, and friends, that I have made, and am still making, an excellent recovery. Lumosity is something very ideal for someone in my situation. It's a very good tool to help me get back on my feet. I've recommended Lumosity to all of my friends as well! I give Lumosity two thumbs up!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

The Visual Thesaurus

I'm Speechless Word of the Day

If you can remember that the combining form -phasia (from Greek for "speak") denotes speech disorders, you have a handy box for a number of things that can go wrong with vocalization. Aphasia is an inability to produce speech owing to disease or injury; dysphasia is the impairment of such ability. All other phasias are rarer and more obscure.

Click here to look up the word of the day in the Visual Thesaurus!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Bells Corners man defies odds, receives special award

His accomplishments are many and overshadow the fact that he is both autistic and aphasic, having learned to communicate as a deaf person.

"To us, this was a big thrill for him to get the award," said Judi Roy, Mike's mother. "When he was a young child, I was told to put him in an institution and to forget about him, as if he didn't have a brain. He hadn't been diagnosed and back then autism was almost unheard of and ...Next...

Saturday, December 19, 2009

TBI-based speech-disorder study to begin with radical new technology.

A team of researchers in Australia received a $755,000 grant to perform a study with the help of a radical new technology to improve the effectiveness of traumatic brain injury (TBI) rehabilitation efforts...Next...

“Blood Clots Almost Killed Me”

In January 2006, Syracuse University mourned the loss of Tracy Halpin, a 21-year-old senior who, according to the medical examiner’s report, died from blood clots in her legs that moved up to her lungs. The clots reportedly caused her to fall on Walnut Avenue, resulting in a liver laceration. When I read about it in the Daily Orange, I remember feeling confused and shocked, but at the same time thinking, how weird, that could never happen to me. One year later, it nearly did...Next..

Monday, December 14, 2009

Troops Strike Up a Tune to Repair the Damage of Brain Injuries

Studies show that music can promote new neural connections, which Colorado State University neuroscientist Michael Thaut theorized could help overcome common symptoms of traumatic brain injury (TBI), such as short-term memory loss and impaired decision-making skills. Thaut and his colleagues enrolled 31 veterans suffering from TBI in a “neurologic music therapy” study where each drummer matches rhythms and tempos set by a bandleader. Last summer, they published results that show that after several 30-minute sessions, the group performed better on standard decision-making tests...Next...

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Brain listens, learns while we sleep

NORTHWESTERN—Even in deep sleep, sounds

make their way into our minds, researchers have

found, and enhance associated memories.

“The research strongly suggests that we don’t shut

down our minds during deep sleep,” says John

Rudoy, lead author of the study and a neuroscience

PhD student at Northwestern University. “Rather 

this is an important time for consolidating memories.”  Next.....

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Toby: The Natural Therapy Pet

Toby is one of God’s little creatures—a happy, vibrant, and friendly puppy. Loyal and affectionate, Toby has helped me   recover from my strokes   by relieving the tremendous stress with which I, a workaholic, have for so long lived.
I suffered three strokes in February and March 2006. I was chopping wood in my backyard in the bitter cold when blood clots formed in the left vertebral artery in the back of my neck. The clots led to two strokes, one in each left and right side of.......

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Medibots: The world's smallest surgeons

Editorial: Getting to the heart of robotic surgery

Gallery: The sci-fi future of surgery

A MAN lies comatose on an operating table. The enormous spider that hangs above him has plunged four appendages into his belly. The spider, made of white steel, probes around inside the man's abdomen then withdraws one of its arms. Held in the machine's claw is a neatly sealed bag containing a scrap of bloody tissue.

This is a da Vinci robot. It has allowed a surgeon, sitting at a control desk, to remove the patient's prostate gland in a manner that has several advantages over conventional methods. Yet the future of robotic surgery may lie not only with these hulking beasts but also with devices at the other end of the size spectrum. The surgeons of tomorrow will include tiny robots that enter our bodies and do their work from the inside, with no need to open patients up or knock them out. While nanobots that swim through the blood are still in the realm of fantasy, several groups are developing devices a few millimetres in size. The first generation of "mini-medibots" may infiltrate our bodies through our ears, eyes and lungs, to deliver drugs, take tissue samples or install medical devices. Next...

Sunday, November 15, 2009

A chat with Lynn Morris

This afternoon, I had a lovely chat with Lynn Morris and Marshall Wilborn. Longtime bluegrass fans are well familiar with Lynn’s many years as a performer, bandleader and friend to our music, and we all felt a great loss when she suffered a stroke in Match of 2003.....next........

Drugs Vivus, Analyst in Obesity Drug Side-Effect Spat

"We believe adverse events such as "disturbance in attention," "memory impairment," "amnesia," "aphasia" and "cognitive disorder" -- even if relatively rare -- will prove to be serious regulatory hurdles for a weight-loss drug. Therefore, we now have reduced conviction in the approvability of Qnexa, and partnering prospects also may be reduced," wrote Cowen analyst Ian Sanderson.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Benefit to help local regain speech

Wine tasting, silent auction and more to fund therapy for local surfer who lost ability to talk after stroke, collapse. For more than 20 years, he was part of staff at Hi-Time cellars.
By Brianna Bailey

Updated: Saturday, September 26, 2009 8:27 PM PDT
There are No comments posted. View Comments

For weeks, nobody knew exactly what happened in the minutes before Newport Beach resident Alan Halderman collapsed on a dock in Catalina, where he was vacationing, after suffering a massive stroke.

Halderman, 53, was wearing swim trunks when he collapsed and had left his wallet back on his boat, anchored just off shore.

The stroke damaged the part of Halderman’s brain that governs communication, leaving him with a disorder known as aphasia.

Halderman couldn’t tell anyone who he was or what had happened, because he couldn’t talk....NEXT....

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Aphasia In-Service Training

A few weeks ago I put together some materials for an in-service training on aphasia. I wanted to share it for those who are looking for an in-service to perform, or for those who would like to learn a little more about it.

Understanding and Working with Aphasia

Presented By: Justin Zarb

Aphasia: Quick Fact Sheet

Who Gets Aphasia and What Causes It?

What is Aphasia?

When Does Aphasia Onset? When Does Aphasia Get Treated?

Where In the Brain Does the Damage Occur?......next.....

Q & A: Tennessee Reed

Authors Ishmael Reed and Tennessee Reed (Photo courtesy: Red Room)

Sometimes, a diagnosis can mean the end of the road. In the case of Tennessee Reed, the daughter of choreographer Carla Blank and writer Ishmael Reed, it was a new beginning. By the time she was two, she had been diagnosed with a speech and language-based learning disorder. Over time, names like Aphasia, Dyscalculia, and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder entered her vocabulary and her life. But she learned to deal with all the labels and disorders she had been overwhelmed with. Even though experts had predicted she would never be able to read or write, she was authoring poetry books by the time she was in her teens. She went on to get a graduate degree from Mills College, write five books of poetry, and most recent next......

Monday, September 21, 2009

Living with Aphasia:


Video in Scottish have Aphasia

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Des Moines teen helps dad deal with stages of living

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.Next..

Couple inspires with cancer book

Given six months to live, Brian Monaghan was prepared to get his affairs in order. But his wife refused to let the diagnosis of Stage IV melanoma take her husband. Eleven years later, the healthy couple have published a book about their inspirational fight.

“We decided we weren’t going to accept cancer as a death sentence,” said Gerri Monaghan of her husband’s 1998 diagnosis and their battle, which they document in The Power of Two: Surviving Serious Illness with an Attitude and an Advocate.

Hundreds walk for heart health in Spfld 2009 annual Pioneer Valley Heart Walk

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - Upwards of 1,000 people came to Springfield's Forest Park to help combat heart disease. Men, women and children fought heart disease by taking part in Sunday's fund raising Pioneer Valley Heart Walk.
22News met up with people who suffer from heart disease and stroke, or who've experienced the disease taking loved ones from them. "My wife had a stroke a year ago in January and she has aphasia to inability to speak. Slowly, slowly, slowly, she's working her way back," said Jack Taylor of Springfield. Next...

Friday, July 17, 2009

A stroke took his voice, but he never lost faith

Dan Kidd rolled out of bed for work at 5 a.m. on Mother's Day and could only walk sideways.

In the shower, his balance failed and he nearly fell over.

He Googled the symptoms of stroke. The results came back: Severe headache, weakness on one side, droopy face, slurred speech and impaired balance. Everything matched.

"Something's happening in my head," Kidd told his wife, Kim, a nurse with experience attending to stroke victims.

She took Dan's blood pressure, put him in the car and drove to the hospital.

There, as doctors ran tests and prescribed medications, Kim noticed something in her husband's voice and alerted the staff: Next..


Petition summary and background
Speakability offers support to people with Aphasia, who have communication problems following a stroke, head injury, brain tumour or other neurological condition. People with Aphasia know what they want to say; they just have trouble finding the right words. They can enjoy social activities just like everyone else if communication tools, such as illustrated / photo hand-held menus, are provided by coffee shop and café owners.
We, the undersigned, suppor Next...

National Aphasia Awareness Month

“Listen and hear my voice; pay attention and hear what I say.” Isaiah28:23

Aphasia is an acquired communication disorder that impairs a person’s ability to process language, but does not affect intelligence. Aphasia impairs the ability to speak and understand others, and most people with aphasia experience difficulty reading and writing.
The most common cause of aphasia is stroke (about 25-40% of stroke survivors acquire aphasia). It can also result from head injury, brain tumor or other neurological causes. Aphasia affects about one million Americans or 1 in 250 people. While aphasia is most common among older people, it can occur in people of all ages.
Recovery from aphasia. If the symptoms Next....

Haifa study: First, second languages controlled by different parts of brain

Ever feel as though you had two languages or more competing for a finite amount of brain space?

If so, think again.

A new study by a University of Haifa researcher on bilingualism suggests that first and second languages are represented in different places in the brain.
Dr. Raphiq Ibrahim was able to extend what little knowledge exists on cerebral linguistic representation by studying the curious medical case of an Israeli Arab who, after sustaining brain damage, found it easier to regain his Arabic than his Hebrew.

The 41-year-old bilingual patient is a native Arabic speaker, but spoke Hebrew nearly as well. A university graduate, he passed entrance exams in Hebrew and used the language frequently at work. Next............

Friday, May 15, 2009

HEALTH NEWS Treating aphasia Thursday, May 14, 2009 | 6:21 PM

A stroke or accident that injures the brain can leave people unable to speak, to understand and express language. This medical problem is called aphasia.

Some doctors think a person's ability to overcome this condition is limited, but at the Adler Aphasia Center in Maywood, New Jersey, patients perform activities that aim to help them to improve.

"Most improvement happens in the first six months, but that's not to say they won't improve for the rest of their lives, and that's very much what we're about," said Karen Tucker, the center's executive director.

Vahan Khoyan had a stroke a few years ago. Like most people with aphasia, his intellect is completely intact, but speaking is a problem. For him, the center is a place to socialize and make friends, to break ...NEXT........................

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

AssistiveWare Previews iPhone Text-To-Speech Proloquo2Go

AssistiveWare announced that it will preview its product, Proloquo2Go, which uses Acapela Group's forthcoming iPhone text-to-speech to provide a full-fledged communication solution on the iPhone and iPod touch for people who cannot speak. Also to show is the upcoming version of Infovox iVox, which introduces new British, Italian, Greek, Norwegian and Russian voices for the Mac.

Also to be introduced by AssistiveWare are the GhostReader document and selection reader used by struggling readers and for language learning, the KeyStrokes on-screen keyboard, the SwitchXS switch access solution to Mac OS X, the VisioVoice access solution for people with vision impairments, in addition to the Mac-based Proloquo communication software.

AssistiveWare will also be showcasing the Axiotron Modbook, a tablet Mac providing an ideal platform for assistive technology software because of it's compact form and durable design.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Piracetam (Nootropyl) and aphasia

Excerpts from Smart Drugs & Nutrients

Piracetam (Nootropyl)

by Ward Dean, M.D., and John Morgenthaler

Piracetam is reported to be an intelligence booster and CNS (central nervous system) stimulant with no known toxicity or addictive properties. Piracetam is inexpensive (under $0.85 per day) and available by mail (see appendix A). The subjective effect described by some people is that piracetam, “wakes up your brain.” You'll find more personal accounts of the effects of this remarkable drug in the case histories and testimonials appendix. It's effects and safety are so impressive that piracetam prompted the creation of a new pharmaceutical category called nootropics.

The term nootropic comes from a Greek word meaning “acting on the mind.” Since the invention of piracetam by UCB Laboratories in Belgium, other pharmaceutical companies have been scrambling to develop their own nootropics. Some of them being researched now include; vinpocetine, aniracetam, pramiracetam, and oxiracetam. As yet, there is no nootropic compound that is FDA approved for sale in the US, but there is plenty of motivation on the part of pharmaceutical companies to get that approval. Financial analysts expect that the US market for these cognitive enhancers will soon be in excess of $1-billion per year (Pelton, 1989).

Piracetam is very similar in molecular structure to the amino acid pyroglutamate (see Pyroglutamate). Piracetam and pyroglutamate have the same “base” chemical structure, the 2-oxo-pyrrolidine, but they differ by the side chain. Pyroglutamate is 2-oxo-pyrrolidine carboxylic acid, and piracetam is 2-oxo-pyrrolidine acetamide.

Piracetam enhances cognition under conditions of hypoxia (too little oxygen), and also enhances memory and some kinds of learning in normal humans. Outside of the US, piracetam is used to treat alcoholism, stroke, vertigo, senile dementia, sickle cell anemia, dyslexia, and numerous other health problems (Pelton, 1989).

One of the most intriguing effects of piracetam is that it promotes the flow of information between the right and left hemispheres of the brain (Buresova, 1976). We know that the communication between the two sides of the brain is associated with flashes of creativity. This may also be the basis for piracetam's usefulness in the treatment of dyslexia (Dilanni, 1985). ..........next...............

Friday, April 24, 2009

Treatment gives Liliana new smile


IT is smiles all around for young 12-year-old Liliana Maravu who suffered a brain tumour that had her blind on one eye.

Thanks to treatment she received under the guidance of Canberra neurosurgeon, Dr K Nandan Chandran, Liliana has had a new lease of life.

Travelling to Fiji to help with brain tumour sufferers, Dr Chandran operated on Maravu with the hope of relieving her suffering.

However, complications after the surgery meant that Liliana was bound for Canberra where she would get a second operation with the hope of rectifying the problem.

With the support of the Rotary Oceania Medical Aid for Children (ROMAC), Liliana’s dream would finally come true as she would travel to Canberra for her operation with her adoptive grandmother, Cecilia Keil.

Lilian accompanied by her grandmother, were hosted in Canberra at the residence of Gungahlin Rotary Club president, Sandra Mahlberg.

She was there until last week in which she was able to see certain specialists who were there to help her in correcting her sight before her return home.

With the kind help from ROMAC who generously offered $20,000 in cash to help the young lady with her hospital costs, Liliana can now breathe a sigh of relief as all her troubles that once haunted her are all just a distant memory.

Her recovery from the operation was somewhat an amazing feat as described by Ms Mahlberg, “she was supposed to have been in hospital for ten days but only spent six days at the hospital and had only a day to content with in ICU.” next.........

talk about tia

A transient ischemic attack (TIA) is a temporary blood clot in the brain. When you have a TIA, your symptoms are similar to those of stroke and last less than a day, yet most last less than five minutes.1 A TIA may make you feel dizzy or confused, but because it is over so quickly, you may not even realize that you had one.

TIA Can Happen to Anyone

I was a healthy, pregnant 32-year-old when I had one of the most frightening experiences of my life, which lasted an agonizing 40 minutes. It was late winter 2007, and I was in a meeting at work when all of a sudden everything went blurry. This terrible feeling washed over me and I couldn't see my colleagues clearly or spell simple words when taking notes. The right side of my body — my arm, face and leg — went numb. I didn't want to draw attention to myself so I sat very still.

The meeting seemed to drag on forever and I was so confused and scared because I didn't know what was happening to me or if it was going to stop. And then the symptoms went away almost as quickly as they came on. I was relieved to feel okay again, but called my husband and he told me to go to the emergency room immediately.

The emergency room doctor diagnosed me with transient ischemic attack (TIA). I had no idea what a TIA was or what the risk factors for having one were. The doctor gave me some materials to read and my husband and I researched more. We learned that high blood pressure or smoking can increase the risk of having a TIA. Although neither of these apply to me, I learned that TIA really can happen to anyone.

Experiencing a TIA was a wake-up call for me. Now I'm aware of what I need to do to prevent another one, which includes eating a healthy diet and regular check-ups with my doctor. I also get plenty of exercise keeping up with my seven-month-old daughter.

I think it's really important for people of all ages to know the symptoms of TIA — I wish I had known what was happening to me during that meeting at work, and the importance of getting help right away. I want people like me to know that TIA exists and it can happen to them. By knowing the symptoms and what to do if you experience them, you can help reduce the risk of having a TIA or stroke.

Jennifer S.
St. Joseph, Missouri

Having a stroke can be devastating. Almost 70% of stroke survivors will be left with some type of disability. These may include paralysis, vision problems, speech or language problems, or memory loss.2

What causes a TIA?

TIAs are caused by a blood clot that partially blocks normal blood flow to the brain. These blockages usually happen for one the following reasons3: next...

Thursday, April 23, 2009

i report

Just a bump in the road . . .My husband was diagnosed in May 2003 with a GBM IV - had radiation and Chemo for three years and is now cancer free. A beautiful clear MRI! Tumor was in the left frontal area - has expressive aphasia (word finding skills) - walks two miles a day and is loved by his family everyday! Life is good

Monday, April 13, 2009

scanman’s casebook: Case 13

Published by Vijay March 20th, 2009 in Brain, CT, Radiology, casebook

CT Angiography shows severe narrowing of the distal cervical, intracanalicular and supraclinoid segments of left Internal Carotid artery with non-visualized terminal segment and its bifurcation. Left Middle Cerebral artery and A1 segment of left Anterior Cerebral artery are not seen. A2 & A3 segments of left ACA are normal.

Diagnosis: Internal Carotid artery dissection with acute cerebral infarction (MCA territory)

Carotid artery dissection is a significant cause of ischemic stroke in all age groups.Spontaneous internal carotid artery dissection is a common cause of ischemic stroke in patients younger than 50 years and accounts for up to 25% of ischemic strokes in young and middle-aged patients. Dissection of the internal carotid artery can occur intracranially or extracranially, with the latter being more frequent. Internal carotid artery dissection can be caused by major or minor trauma, or it can be spontaneous in which case genetic, familial, and/or heritable disorders are likely etiologies. Patients can present in a variety of settings, such as a trauma bay with multiple traumatic injuries; their physician’s office with nonspecific head, neck, or face pain; or to the emergency department with a partial Horner syndrome. A high index of suspicion is required to make this difficult diagnosis. Sophisticated imaging techniques, which have improved over the last two decades, are required to confirm the presence of dissection.

Further Reading:

1. Case of Carotid Dissection with stroke at Radiopaedia.org - completely worked up with plain CT, DW MRI, CT Perfusion & DSA images.
2. Dissection, Carotid Artery - article in Medscape Radiology [Registration required, Free]
3. Acute Cerebral Infarction - case in BrighamRad.