The Aphasiology Archive
University Library System, University of Pittsburgh

A biological model of aphasia rehabilitation: Pharmacological perspectives

Small, Steven L.
A biological model of aphasia rehabilitation: Pharmacological perspectives. Aphasiology, 18(5-7), 2004, pages 473-492.


Background: Aphasia is a multi-modality disturbance of speech, language, and memory caused by neurological injury, particularly stroke.

Aims: This review article views aphasia as fundamentally a disease of the brain, and aims to survey biological treatments for aphasia that address amelioration of brain injury.

Main Contribution: The review examines the effects of different drugs on both direct and indirect mechanisms of neural circuit reorganisation, gauged through effects on multi-modal measures of speech, language, and memory. Based on this review, therapists might choose to analyse and change the pharmacological state of their patients with aphasia.

Conclusions: We conclude that (a) both biological and behavioural therapies affect brain repair and reorganisation; (b) pharmacotherapy is not yet proven, but has promise, but only when accompanied by concomitant behavioural therapy; (c) the most important biological interventions that can be accomplished at present are to withdraw certain drugs that impede aphasia recovery and to administer anti-depressants to all patients with major or minor post-stroke depression.

EPrint Type:Journal (Paginated)
ID Code:1494
Conference:Clinical Aphasiology Conference: Clinical Aphasiology Conference (2003 : 33rd : Orcas Island, WA : May 2003)
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
Alternative Locations:,,
Additional Information:Access to Full Text is subject to the Publisher's access restrictions.