Speech long after stroke

26 March 2012

Research has demonstrated that, with therapy, many of these patients can talk and understand language again. But the process can be slow and expensive.

Lisa Edmonds, an aphasia researcher at the University of Florida, says some patients continue to make gains for years. “The improvement may not be as steep as it is in the first year, but there is the capacity to continue improving. Some for three, five years after,” she said.

Mollie Middlebrook scoured the country looking for additional speech therapy for her husband Charlie, 66, after he suffered a stroke just over a year ago.

“After three or four months of therapy at home, they said he had plateaued,” she said. But she read research reports suggesting more therapy could help. “I wanted intensive therapy before his first year was up, so he could get the most out of it.”

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