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From the Aphasia Recovery Connection  - 
June is National Aphasia Awareness Month
From the National Aphasia Assn - June is National Aphasia Awareness Month
Aphasia affects talking, understanding, reading and writing, and can occur in people of any age.

As this year's national aphasia awareness poster indicates, improvement can continue for many years;  hard work and daily practice help in aphasia recovery.  The slogan is: "It's Never Too Late...to Communicate!" 


This year's theme and poster was developed and designed with the help of The Big Sky Aphasia Program in Missoula, MT,   Host Group of Aphasia Awareness Month.   

Aphasia Camp Northwest 2014,  Aug 22 - 24

The Aphasia Camp Northwest (formerly Stroke Camp NW), founded in 1999, is held annually in late summer. This  is a joint program,  with Portland State University and Pacific University, and provides supported communication strategies for persons living with aphasia, and outdoor and indoor recreational opportunities appropriate for survivors.   


If you have additional questions about the camp or would like registration information, contact camp@aphasianetwork.org or call 

(503) 577-1282. 


Registration forms can be sent to:

The Aphasia Network
PO Box 13406
Portland OR 97213

Out of the Darkness - New Book


Editor's Note:
This book  - Out of the Darkness: An Inspirational Story of Survival in the Face of Stroke and Locked-In Syndromeby Allison O'Reilly,  talks about a woman who  went from being an active woman engaged in her family, the challenges of daily life, and a career as director of marketing for a Fortune 100 company to a life struggle to regain her independence. 
In this book, Allison shares her personal story of experiencing a brain stem stroke that left her in a locked-in syndrome.  
Walk and Talk, Northwestern University,  June 28


Tobii Acquires AAC Leader DynaVox Systems


Tobii Technology, the global leader in eye tracking, recently announced that it has reached an agreement to acquire 100 percent of the membership interest in DynaVox Systems LLC, a leading provider of speech-generating devices and symbol-adapted special education software. 

The future merger will solidify Tobii's Assistive Technology division as the international leader in the augmentative and alternative communication and accessibility markets.  


The Use of Drug Therapy in Stroke -Induced Aphasia 


In their recovery process, most people with aphasia undergo speech and language therapy. They may also supplement their communication experiences using AAC. Sadly, recovery of language skills is usually a slow, tedious and most-often-times frustrating process.

If only there was a pill to take!?

In this article and the related drug profiles, we review some of the  evidence from clinical trials concerning aphasia treatment and therapy.


Certain drugs have been trialed, including dopaminergic, cholinergic, and stimulant drugs, with out  clear benefit shown in large trials. Some small-scale clinical trials of treatments for aphasia have also been reported. These trials suggest benefit, comparing reasonably well with evidence-based therapies for neurologic diseases involving drugs. 


Some  of the studies are testing how drugs can be used in combination with speech therapy to improve recovery of various language functions.  And,  some  researchers have been looking at how treatment of other cognitive deficits involving attention and memory can improve communication abilities.


Some of the drugs being tested include: Piracetam, Bromocriptine, Donepezil, Memantine and the amphetamines.  Click on the name of the drug for additional information:


>  Memantine  
[Hardcover],  Marcelo L. Berthier (Editor), Guadalupe Davila (Editor)

To be published: 10 November 2014 | ISBN-10: 1138799882 | ISBN-13: 978-1138799882

This book provides clinicians and researchers with the current state-of-the-art on the pharmacological treatment of aphasia. This book was originally published as a special issue of Aphasiology.
Safety in Pharmalogical Enhancement in Stroke Rehabilitation 
3. Teasell R. et al, EVIDENCE-BASED REVIEW OF STROKE REHABILITATION,  Chapter14_Aphasia, (13th Edition) Sept 2013,

Believe - Patience


Believe - Patience - Never give up.
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 May 30, 2014
"Finally, when finding words is hard, finding help is easy . . . with BCAT." Contact us to find out how you can become a person recovering from aphasia.
In this edition
This is Sharon Rennhack, the  chief  editor for the aphasiatoolbox newsletter.  
These are some of the Highlights in this month's edition:


> June is National Aphasia Awareness Month!  See the photo and poster from ARC and NAA.


> We are starting a  new feature this month discussing Alternative Aphasia Therapies;  this month I review some of the research on drug therapy.  Bill  Connors presents his video discussing his viewpoints on the use of pharmacology in aphasia therapy and treatment.
>  Don Weinstein makes a case for a new aphasia organization.  


Sharon Rennhack

Chief Editor 
VIDEO:  Master Clinician Bill Connors discusses Drug Therapy 


Editor's Note:

In this video, Master Clinician Bill Connors  discusses the use of pharmacology in  aphasia therapy and treatment.  


Bill Connors discusses pharmacology.
Bill Connors discusses pharmacology.

If you have questions about this video or if you want to receive the detailed report - "Pharmacology in Aphasia Treatment & Recovery",  please  contact us or  call  us at 724-494-2534.  

A new paradigm


Editor's Note:

Donald F. Weinstein, author of "My Stroke: 450 Days From Severe Aphasia To Speaking, Reading and Writing " (2009), and former member of the Executive Board at the National Aphasia Association, recently published an article entitled "A new paradigm to rally round people with aphasia".  


This is an excerpt:
I have a dream . . .   aphasiacs must own their organizations, an organization of aphasiacs, controlled by aphasiacs, for aphasiacs, headed by a person with aphasia with an abiding respect for the need of transparency, with some kind of a annual shareholder meeting, so that the people who give money can hold the board, director and staff responsible for the organization's programs.;. these groups will be supported by families members, employ speech, occupational, emotional and physical therapists; they will get help from grassroots marches, protests, boycotts and civil disobedience; and if needed they can buy other talents . . .  
The aphasia movement is a movement for people with aphasia; remember the poster woman or man is a person with aphasia. Please give me some feedback especially if you want to form a new aphasia organization with aphasia management.
What do you think of Don's comments?  Send your comments to  information@aphasiatoolbox.com and reference the "Weinstein Article".


FEATURE:    What is Aphasia Sight Reader?

Editor's Note: 

Aphasia Sight Reader is the official treatment and practice software of aphasiatoolbox;   it incorporates our philosophy of Brain Compatible Aphasia Treatment


BCAT  blends aphasia research and current best clinical evidence with neuroscience, learning theory, technology and SLP clinical expertise while emphasizing the values, needs and goals of the PWA (Connors, 2010). BCAT offers the theory and the tools that the competent SLP can blend with her/his clinical expertise, skill set and background knowledge to assist in truly exploiting neuroplasticty in the treatment of aphasia and related disorders.


BCAT now consists over 15 different treatment modules that focus on particular aphasic symptoms and problems utilizing 75 treatment/practice protocols. Each protocol is supported by hundreds of exercises on a dedicated website with accompanying software. 


The treatment modules are listed below.


> Aphasiaphonics  

A treatment module that has been designed to reconnect speech sound encoding and 


> Conjugation

A treatment module that helps clients reconnect their ability to speak in self generated sentences.


> Discourse Building

A treatment module designed to help PWA organize thoughts and to order their own sentences.


> Keyboarding and Flash Spelling  

A treatment module designed to help the PWA propositionally spell and use digital interfaces.


> Morphing

Reconnecting the ability for normal communication skills requring mastery of morphological elements of language.


> Numeracy

A treatment module designed to reconnect the ability to use numbers in real life.


> Pronouns  

The module helps the client improve their ability to use references which are critical in narration and discourse.


 > Pure Alexia

This module helps the client to read.


> Semantic Cognition

A module designed to improve fluent word recall for discourse.


> Verbing 

A treatment module that focuses on verbs and the propositional use of verbs.


Please review our Powerpoint presentation on Aphasiattoolbox and Aphasia Sight Reader. 


Aphasia Sight Reader is included in our subscription package.  For information on subscriptions,  or  to schedule a tour of Aphasiatoolbox and Aphasia Sight Reader,  contact us.     

Upcoming  Courses from Aphasiatoolbox


Master Clinician Bill Connors is offering the following onsite  presentations in 2014, on  

Aphasia-Apraxia Therapy: Exploiting Neuroplasticity:
June 6-7, 2014, Lafayette, LA 
The Louisiana Speech-Language-Hearing Association Annual Convention  
June 21, 2014,  San Antonio, TX 
Visit  www.motivationsceu.com for more information and to register. 
These 1-day seminar will present innovative treatment protocols and technology-based tools that enhance clinical skills, assist in the integration of evidence and patient values into aphasia rehabilitation, and save clinician preparation time.
Techniques and tools that optimize exploitation of neuroplasticity to maximize aphasia recovery will be featured.  Participants will observe demonstrations of and be involved in aphasia and apraxia treatment including live telepractice sessions and video recordings that utilize the comprehensive Brain Compatible Aphasia Treatment Program.  The session will be highly interactive and will address the synergies between the treatment of adult and childhood speech and language disorders.    


For information on these courses, click here to contact us  or phone 724-494-2534.     
The Aphasia Center of Innovative Treatment, Inc | | bill@aphasiatoolbox.com | http://www.aphasiatoolbox.com
800 Vinial Street, B408
Pittsburgh, PA 15212

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