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Unfamiliar Storytelling as a Measure of Language and Cognition After a Stroke

EasyChair Preprint no. 6536

2 pagesDate: September 2, 2021


People who have recovered from aphasia according to the Western Aphasia Battery Revised (WAB-R) often continue to experience communication difficulties. The cognitive-linguistic deficits of these “recovered” people with aphasia (PWA) are not being fully captured by most assessments, which focus on single words and simple sentences. The goal of the current novel work is to investigate whether “recovered” PWA show greater discourse and narrative impairments for unfamiliar than familiar stories, given that discource analysis can identify the subtle communication deficits. 

Two right-handed females with a single left-hemisphere stroke and 20 control participants were tested for the current study. During the most recent assessment with the WAB-R both patients either met or were close to the cut-off for the “no longer aphasic” classification. Participants retold two familiar stories and two novel stories, which were analyzed using Story Grammar. 

For both familiar stories, both patients were slightly below the control mean, but within the control range of number of episodes produced. In contrast, for the novel stories, they were below the control mean and outside of the control range.

Storytelling provides a subtle measure of impairment in “recovered” PWA, with novel stories providing a more sensitive measure than familiar stories.  From a clinical assessment perspective, these results suggest that only administering Cinderella may result in clinicians missing important language processing deficits. From a cognitive science perspective, this distinction between novel and familiar story telling raises interesting questions about discourse processing. Given the clear dissociation between novel and familiar storytelling observed in these two participants, it is critical to investigate the differences in the cognitive processes involved in these two minimally different tasks.

Keyphrases: aphasia, discourse, Narrative production, non-aphasic, recovered from aphasia, Storytelling, Stroke

BibTeX entry
BibTeX does not have the right entry for preprints. This is a hack for producing the correct reference:
  author = {Katsiaryna Kazhuro and Simon Fischer-Baum},
  title = {Unfamiliar Storytelling as a Measure of Language and Cognition After a Stroke},
  howpublished = {EasyChair Preprint no. 6536},

  year = {EasyChair, 2021}}
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