Description (from grant):
Aphasia (language impairment), is one of the most devastating problems after left hemisphere stroke, because it can interfere with an individual's social interactions, ability to return to work, and even simple daily activities. Many stroke survivors have permanent deficits in language production (non-fluent aphasia) for which there is no definitive treatment. This controlled prospective randomized assessor blinded phase II clinical trial will determine whether an innovative form of speech therapy entitled Speech Entrainment Therapy (SET) leads to significant improvements in language production for subjects with non-fluent aphasia, and SET's optimal dose (duration of therapy in weeks).
Subproject 2: Speech and language treatment (SALT) can be helpful in restoring language function, but recovery is often incomplete. Recent studies indicate that the effectiveness of SALT can be augmented by concurrent Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS), a noninvasive, non-painful, electrical stimulation of the brain. It is believed that tDCS boosts neural plasticity that underlies recovery with SALT. This research will lay the groundwork for designing a Phase III clinical trial of tDCS + language therapy for aphasia early after stroke.