Effects of Aphasia-Friendly Readings: Responsive reading for couples

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Zwanziger, Madison
Nicks, Lindsey
Bailey, Brittney
Powell, Addison
Keese, Daphne
Recker, Breanna
O'Bryan, Erin

Zwanziger, M.; Nicks, L.; Bailey, B.; Powell, A.; Keese, D. Recker, B. 2021. Effects of Aphasia-Friendly Readings: Responsive reading for couples -- In Proceedings: 17th Annual Symposium on Graduate Research and Scholarly Projects. Wichita, KS: Wichita State University


INTRODUCTION: This is a presentation that shows the progress of a person with aphasia after having eight weeks of Aphasia-Friendly Readings Therapy, a family-centered therapy approach developed by the spouse of a person with aphasia (Regier, 2019). PURPOSE: The purpose of this study is to determine if Aphasia-Friendly Readings is a successful therapy process for improving speech among those with expressive aphasia, while also being an enjoyable activity for both the person with aphasia and their partner. METHODS: A 70-year-old female with expressive aphasia and her husband participated in the current study to test the effects of Aphasia-Friendly Readings. Before therapy began, the participant was administered the Western Aphasia Battery-Revised (WAB-R), the Reading Comprehension Battery for Aphasia (RCBA), and the Assessment for Living with Aphasia (ALA). After the pre-testing, the clinician worked with the couple to compose a script in the Aphasia-Friendly Readings format. The couple met with the clinician once a week for an average of 60 minutes per session to practice reading the script together aloud. During the session, the clinician provided cues for the participant, while also training the husband, so that he could use the cues while they practiced at home. The pre-treatment tests were readministered as post-treatment tests in order to measure progress. RESULTS: Prior to the treatment, the participant was given a variety of pre-tests. The results of the pre and post-test of the WAB-R show that she improved her aphasia quotient score by 4.5%. Her WAB-R post-test aphasia quotient of 52.2 out of 100 is indicative of expressive aphasia and is classified as severe Broca's aphasia. Her pre-test and post-test results from the RCBA show that her reading comprehension ability moved up from the 55th percentile to the 56th percentile. The results of the pre-test and post-test of the ALA show that she reported improved quality of life by 0.16 points on a 5-point scale. During the first treatment session, the participant independently read 4.6% of the words correctly from the script. During the seventh week of the treatment, she was able to independently read 73.5% of the words correctly. A follow-up reading showed that four weeks after treatment ended, she was able to independently read 69.9% of the words correctly. CONCLUSION: In conclusion, the person with aphasia showed an increase in the number of words she could read independently from the script. The couple expressed that they were very pleased with what they accomplished. In an interview, the husband shared, "Her communication, in the time that we have done this research and working on the story, at home she, instead of just using words or I mean, even a couple words, she's trying to put things together in a sentence structure to communicate with me which, that's one of the reasons why I'm so excited [about it]."

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Presented to the 17th Annual Symposium on Graduate Research and Scholarly Projects (GRASP) held online, Wichita State University, April 2, 2021.
Research completed in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, College of Health Professions