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Demographic, Health, and Neural Factors Associated with Chronic Aphasia Severity

EasyChair Preprint no. 6470

2 pagesDate: August 30, 2021



Lesion size and location are often reported as the most reliable factors that predict severity of language impairment in persons with post-stroke aphasia. Several studies have also found that demographic and health factors are related aphasia severity. The extent to which these factors predict language impairment, beyond traditional cortical measures, remains unknown. Identifying and understanding the contributions of factors to predictive models of severity constitutes critical knowledge for clinicians interested in charting the likely course of aphasia in their patients and designing effective treatment approaches in light of those predictions.


The Demographic Model revealed cognitive reserve and time post-stroke as significant predictors of severity (p = 0.004; p = 0.03), and the Health Model found that the extent of periventricular hyperintensities was associated with severity (p = 0.01). An interaction between presence of diabetes and exercise frequency was also found (p = 0.04), indicating that those with comorbid diabetes who exercise more had less severe aphasia than those who do not exercise. Finally, the Overall Model showed a relationship between aphasia severity and time post-stroke (p = 0.02), periventricular hyperintensities (p = 0.001), and a significant interaction between diabetes and exercise frequency post-stroke (p = 0.03).


Results from this study add to the growing literature suggesting demographic variables can shed light on individual differences in aphasia severity beyond lesion profile. Additionally, our results emphasize the importance of cognitive reserve and brain health in aphasia recovery.

Keyphrases: Aging, aphasia, recovery, Stroke, White Matter Hyperintensities

BibTeX entry
BibTeX does not have the right entry for preprints. This is a hack for producing the correct reference:
  author = {Lisa Johnson and Alexandra Basilakos and Samaneh Nemati and Chris Rorden and Roger Newman-Norlund and Leonardo Bonilha and Argye Hillis and Gregory Hickok and Julius Fridriksson},
  title = {Demographic, Health, and Neural Factors Associated with Chronic Aphasia Severity},
  howpublished = {EasyChair Preprint no. 6470},

  year = {EasyChair, 2021}}
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