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每日英語跟讀 Ep.K350: 布魯斯威利的「失語症」是什麼? What to know about aphasia, Bruce Willis’ diagnosis

· 每日跟讀單元 Daily English

每日英語跟讀 Ep.K350: What to know about aphasia, Bruce Willis’ diagnosis

The news that film star Bruce Willis has retired from acting due to aphasia has shone a spotlight on the poorly understood communication disorder.

電影明星布魯斯·威利斯(Bruce Willis)因失語症而退出演藝界的消息引起了人們對這種知之甚少的溝通障礙的關注。

“Aphasia just means that someone has a problem with language that they weren’t born with,” Hugo Botha, a neurologist at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota explained.

“失語症只是意味著某人的語言有問題,而他們並不是天生的,”明尼蘇達州梅奧診所的神經學家Hugo Botha解釋。

The most common cause is stroke or head injury — and experts stress that while it can affect the production and comprehension of both speech and written words, it normally doesn’t impact intelligence.

最常見的原因是中風或頭部受傷 - 專家強調,雖然它會影響言語和書面文字的產生和理解,但它通常不會影響智力。

It affects some two million Americans, according to the National Aphasia Association, making it more common than Parkinson’s Disease, cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy.

根據美國國家失語症協會的數據,它影響了大約200萬美國人,使其比帕金森病,腦癱或肌肉萎縮症更常見。

While it’s normally caused by a specific one-time event such as stroke, “there are other possibilities, such as from a neurodegenerative disease,” or a growing tumor, explained Brenda Rapp, a cognitive scientist at Johns Hopkins University.

雖然它通常是由特定的一次性事件引起的,如中風,但「還有其他可能性,例如來自神經退行性疾病」或不斷增長的腫瘤,約翰霍普金斯大學的認知科學家Brenda Rapp解釋說。

In such cases the damage is progressive and therapy focuses on preventing further loss of function.

在這種情況下,損傷是漸進的,治療的重點是防止進一步的功能喪失。

The brain system governing language is a “very complex machine” that involves selecting the right words, moving the mouth appropriately to vocalize them, and on the other end hearing and decoding their meaning, said Rapp.

拉普說,支配語言的大腦系統是一個「非常複雜的機器」,包括選擇正確的單詞,適當地移動嘴巴來發聲,另一端聽到和解碼它們的含義。

Everyone occasionally struggles to find the right word, “but you could imagine in aphasia, this happens a lot,” she added.

每個人偶爾都會努力尋找合適的詞,“但你可以想像在失語症中,這種情況經常發生,”她補充說。

Doctors sometimes split aphasia into broad clinical categories which correlate to where in the brain injury occurred.

醫生有時會將失語症分為廣泛的臨床類別,這些類別與腦損傷發生的地點相關。

In expressive aphasia, people “usually understand fairly well but have trouble getting words out,” said speech pathologist Brooke Hatfield, of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). The brain is extremely plastic, and speech therapy can engage other parts of it to “bypass the roadblocks” of the damaged areas, and forge new connections, said Rapp.

在表達性失語症中,人們“通常理解得很好,但很難把單詞說出來,”美國言語 - 語言 - 聽力協會(ASHA)的言語病理學家Brooke Hatfield說。Rapp說,大腦的可塑性極強,言語治療可以讓大腦的其他部分參與進來,以「繞過受損區域的障礙」,並建立新的聯繫。

Such therapy also teaches people to talk around the subject if they get stuck on a specific word.

Family members can also develop strategies to make themselves better understood: “Things like shorter sentences, and making sure that you’re talking to the person in full view instead of the other room, and minimizing background noise,” said Botha.

這種療法還教會人們在遇到特定單詞時圍繞該主題進行交談。

家庭成員也可以制定策略,讓自己更好地理解:「比如較短的句子,確保你在眾目睽睽之下而不是在另一個房間與人交談,並盡量減少背景噪音,“Botha說。

Some people do well with assistive devices because their ability to write isn’t affected in the same way.

Over the horizon, there are experimental treatments that combine electrical stimulation of the brain with speech therapy that have shown promise in recovering function, said Rapp.

有些人在使用輔助設備時做得很好,因為他們的寫作能力不會受到同樣的影響。

Rapp說,在未來,有實驗性的治療方法將大腦的電刺激與言語治療相結合,這些療法在恢復功能方面顯示出希望。

In the case of progressive aphasia, developing drugs that target the build up of protein plaques and tangles in the brain that cause neurodegenerative disease are thought to be the way forward.

在進行性失語症的情況下,開發針對導致神經退行性疾病的蛋白質斑塊和纏結在大腦中積聚的藥物被認為是前進的方向。Source article: https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/lang/archives/2022/04/12/2003776424

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