What to know about aphasia after Wendy Williams' primary progressive aphasia and frontotemporal dementia diagnosis

Talk show host and media personality Wendy Williams He was diagnosed with primary progression Loss of ability to speak and frontotemporal dementia, her care team announced Thursday.

“The decision to share this news was difficult and was made after careful consideration, not only to call for understanding and compassion for Wendy, but also to raise awareness about aphasia and frontotemporal dementia and support thousands of others facing similar conditions,” the team stated in a press release.

Williams, 59, whose next Lifetime documentary is titled “Where's Wendy Williams?” It premiered on February 24, and she has been open about her past health issues, revealing her experience with Graves' disease, a thyroid condition.

Dementia is an umbrella term that describes “impaired ability to remember, think, or make decisions that interferes with carrying out daily activities,” according to the institute. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Frontotemporal dementia is caused by degeneration of the frontal and/or temporal lobes of the brain, according to National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke At the National Institutes of Health. It is the most common form of dementia among people under the age of 60, and there is currently no known cure.

According to the agency, symptoms of frontotemporal dementia, or FTD, can vary from person to person. Symptoms may include “changes in personality, behavior, and judgment.” Primary progressive aphasia, which includes “changes in the ability to communicate” as well as “problems with memory, thinking, and judgment”; Movement disorders or problems with balance or walking.

See also  The best moments in Trevor Noah's monologue - The Hollywood Reporter

“Frontotemporal dementia is progressive, meaning symptoms get worse over time,” the agency says. “In the early stages, people may experience only one type of symptom. As the disease progresses, other symptoms will appear as more parts of the brain are affected. It is difficult to predict how long someone with frontotemporal dementia will live.”

Here are five things to know about aphasia.

Aphasia affects language

According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disordersanother sub-agency within the National Institutes of Health, aphasia results from damage to the parts of the brain that process language, usually the left side of the brain.

This disorder can make it difficult to speak, write, read, and understand.

Aphasia can be caused by brain damage

In most cases, aphasia comes on suddenly, such as a stroke or traumatic brain injury, according to the National Institutes of Health.

If a person has a brain tumor or progressive neurological disease, aphasia may develop gradually.

In certain conditions, such as frontotemporal dementia, slow deterioration of brain cells occurs He can drive To progressive syndromes, such as aphasia.

It does not affect the human mind

While people with aphasia have difficulty communicating, the disorder itself does not affect their intelligence, according to researchers. National Aphasia Association.

“For people with aphasia, it is the ability to access thoughts and opinions through language — not the thoughts and ideas themselves — that is disrupted,” according to the NAA.

See also  Godzilla x Kong global box office opening

There are different types of aphasia

There are different types of aphasia depending on which area of ​​the brain is damaged.

In Broca's aphasia, which results from damage to the frontal lobe of the brain, a person may be unable to produce complete words or sentences despite being able to fully understand speech, according to the National Institutes of Health.

In the case of Wernicke's aphasia, which results from damage to the brain's temporal lobe, a person may speak in long, often made-up sentences, and may have difficulty understanding speech, the agency said.

According to the National Institutes of Health, another type, global aphasia, can cause widespread damage across the language parts of the brain, leaving a person unable to speak and understand.

In the case of conductive aphasia, the person may have difficulty repeating words, even though he or she understands them, while in involuntary aphasia, the person may have difficulty naming objects, even though he knows what the object is.

In primary progressive aphagia, which is a gradual loss of overall language ability, a person may slowly lose the ability to speak over time, progressing to a severe loss over time.

Speech and language therapy is the ideal treatment

Some people with aphasia can see improvements even without treatment as their brain recovers, according to the National Institutes of Health.

For others, speech and language therapy is needed to help regain the ability to communicate.

The amount of language abilities a person can regain depends on the cause of the brain injury, the extent of the injury and where the damage occurred in the brain, and the person's age and health, according to the National Institutes of Health.

See also  Jeremy Boring: Time to 'build alternatives' and ditch the 'loss, complain and ask for donations' strategy

In addition to speech and language therapy, social activities such as book clubs and support groups can also be helpful for treatment, as well as family involvement, according to the National Institutes of Health.

ABC News' Carson Blackwelder and Katie Kindlan, along with Dr. Constantine E. Kanakis and Dr. Eli Kahan, contributed to this article.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *