Authors: Adelt A, Hanne S, Stadie N
Title: Treatment of sentence comprehension and production in aphasia: is there cross-modal generalisation?
Source: Neuropsychological Rehabilitation 2018 28(6): 937-965
Year: 2018
Research Design: Single Case Design

Exploring generalisation following treatment of language deficits in aphasia can provide insights into the functional relation of the cognitive processing systems involved. In the present study, we first review treatment outcomes of interventions targeting sentence processing deficits and, second report a treatment study examining the occurrence of practice effects and generalisation in sentence comprehension and production. In order to explore the potential linkage between processing systems involved in comprehending and producing sentences, we investigated whether improvements generalise within (i.e., uni-modal generalisation in comprehension or in production) and/or across modalities (i.e., cross-modal generalisation from comprehension to production or vice versa). Two individuals with aphasia displaying co-occurring deficits in sentence comprehension and production were trained on complex, non-canonical sentences in both modalities. Two evidence-based treatment protocols were applied in a crossover intervention study with sequence of treatment phases being randomly allocated. Both participants benefited significantly from treatment, leading to uni-modal generalisation in both comprehension and production. However, cross-modal generalisation did not occur. The magnitude of uni-modal generalisation in sentence production was related to participants? sentence comprehension performance prior to treatment. These findings support the assumption of modality-specific sub-systems for sentence comprehension and production, being linked uni-directionally from comprehension to production.

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