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Course: MCAT > Unit 4

Lesson 1: Foundations of behavior passages

Language deficits and traumatic brain injury


Language is the communication system of the human race, and the primary organ of this system is the brain. Much of what scientists know about language processing is based on studies of individuals who have difficulty with speech following brain damage. These individuals exhibit different and specific language deficits, depending on the area of the brain that has experienced trauma; some patients struggle with reading, others have trouble with speech comprehension. This is because there are specific structures in the brain that control and integrate different aspects of language. Based on the location and depth of injuries, physicians seek to diagnose language disorders and anticipate the specific needs of their patients.
One clinic that specializes in the treatment of traumatic brain injury provides a special program for patients who are learning to manage their language disorders. The program groups patients together based on their diagnosis and assigns them to speech-language pathologists who work with them on an individual and group basis to recover specific speech functions. Table 1 outlines the percent of patients in the clinic who have been diagnosed with each disorder.
Broca’s aphasia40%
Wernicke’s aphasia30%
Global aphasia12%
Conduction aphasia9%
Patient K is unable to name items presented to her, even though she is able to pick them up and use them correctly. What disorder does Patient K most likely have?
Choose 1 answer: