Authors: Kiran S, Roberts PM
Title: Semantic feature analysis treatment in Spanish-English and French-English bilingual aphasia
Source: Aphasiology 2010 24(2): 231-261
Year: 2010
Research Design: Single Case Design

Background: Edmonds and Kiran (2006) reported that training lexical retrieval in one language resulted in within-language and cross-language generalisation in three bilingual (English-Spanish) patients with aphasia. Aims: The present experiment continues this line of research, repeating a similar procedure with new patients and examining a broader range of factors that may affect generalisation patterns. Methods and Procedures: Four participants (two Spanish-English and two French-English speakers) with anomia post CVA received a semantic feature-based treatment aimed at improving naming of English or Spanish/French nouns. Using a multiple baseline design, generalisation to untrained semantically related and unrelated items in each language was measured during periods of therapy first in one language, then in the other. Outcomes and Results: All patients improved their naming of the trained items in the trained language, although to varying degrees. Within-language generalisation to semantically related items occurred in two Spanish-English patients and one French-English patient. Cross-language generalisation to translations and semantically related items occurred only for one French-English patient. Conclusions: The impact of the intervention is very clear. The semantic feature-based practice is linked to the gains made, and accounts for the predominance of semantic naming errors after treatment. Possible explanations for the different patterns of generalisation are considered in terms of the various factors including each patient's prestroke language proficiency, age of acquisition of each language, post-stroke level of language impairment, and type and severity of aphasia.

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