Russian scientists are developing an online electronic system that will help patients who have suffered a stroke with speech rehabilitation. The number of patients with systematic speech disorders caused by strokes continues to increase every year. In some cases, such patients are unable to speak at all.
Patients suffering from aphasia (speech disorders) and their relatives experience serious psychological stress.
Aphasia-related speech disorders call for regular therapy involving medical experts. However, many patients live in remote areas, and this can make it difficult for them to get speech therapy.
Linguists study speech patterns of patients with various types of speech disorders, and then they assess the results of preliminary linguistic work with such patients; this makes it possible to compile a system of exercises, Anastasia Kolmogorova, Head of the Department of Romance Languages and Applied Linguistics at Siberian Federal University’s School of Philology and Language Communication, explained.
“We take into account the influence of the context while using linguistic units, including their direct and figurative meanings, their linguistic specifications, including the frequency of their use and poly-semantic aspects, as well as psycho-linguistic parameters (reproduction, learning age, objective and subjective difficulties), on the successful reinstatement of such linguistic units in a patient’s mental vocabulary,” she added.
While cooperating with experts from the department for restoring higher mental functions at the Federal Siberian Science-Clinical Center of Russia’s Federal Medical-Biological Agency (O. Nikolskaya, S. Prokopenko (D.Sc) and Y. Mozheiko (D.Sc), scientists at the School of Philology and Language Communication of Siberian Federal University analyzed data obtained while studying the specifics of using linguistic units by patients affected by aphasia, including light, medium and acute phases. They also collected audio and video material showing the interaction between speech therapists and patients with aphasia during rehabilitation classes.
According to Director of the School of Philology and Language Communication Lyudmila Kulikova, project implementation results can influence the patient rehabilitation methodology and its main principles, as well as linguists’ view on the mental vocabulary’s organization and the linguistic system’s functioning. “Cognitive science in Russia and abroad focuses on these interdisciplinary matters,” she added.