24-Hour Crisis Hotline: (877)SAFEGBC or (877)723-3422 Mental Health & Substance Abuse Issues

6502 Nursery Drive, Suite 100
Victoria, TX 77904
(361)575-0611
(800)421-8825
Fax: (361)578-5500

Alzheimers Disease and other Cognitive Disorders
Resources
Basic Information
Introduction & Causes of Cognitive DisordersDementiaAlzheimer's DiseaseOther Cognitive DisordersDementia Coping Skills & Behavior ManagementTraumatic Brain Injury (TBI)Conclusion and Resources
More InformationLatest News
What Helps Calm Agitated Dementia Patients?AHA News: Growing – and Aging – Hispanic Population at Risk for DementiaAHA News: Yo-Yoing Blood Pressure Could Be Bad for Those With Alzheimer'sGive Seniors a Memory Check at Annual Checkups, Experts SayFor People at High Risk, Evidence That Exercise Might Slow Alzheimer'sDementia Caregivers Often Face Sleepless NightsHealth Tip: Dementia and DrivingGetting Hitched Might Lower Your Odds for DementiaHow You Can Help Head Off Alzheimer's DiseaseDeep Brain 'Zap' Restores Vivid Memories to Alzheimer's PatientsHow to Protect a Loved One With Dementia During a Heat WaveToo Much Napping May Signal Alzheimer'sDepression, Alzheimer's Might Be Part of Same Process in Some Aging Brains: StudyStay Social to Help Cut Your Odds of DementiaBlood Test May Spot Brain Changes of Early Alzheimer'sClues to Why Women Have Higher Odds for Alzheimer'sA New and Better Way to 'Stage' Alzheimer's Patients?At Risk for Alzheimer's? Exercise Might Help Keep It at BayHealthy Living Can Cut Odds for Alzheimer's in People at Genetic RiskHormone Treatment for Prostate Cancer Linked to Heightened Alzheimer's RiskAlzheimer's Genes Might Show Effects in Your 20sWidely Prescribed Class of Meds Might Raise Dementia RiskCancer Survivors May Have Lower Odds for DementiaCommon Blood Pressure Med Might Help Fight Alzheimer'sEducation, Intelligence Might Protect Your BrainOpioids Put Alzheimer's Patients at Risk of Pneumonia: StudyFor Some, Trouble Tracking Finances Could Be Sign of DementiaIt's Never Too Late for New Brain CellsHigh LDL Cholesterol Tied to Early-Onset Alzheimer'sDoes Hormone Therapy for Prostate Cancer Raise Dementia Risk?Could Alzheimer's Spread Like Infection Throughout the Brain?Newly Discovered Illness May Cause Nearly 1 in 5 Dementias, Experts SayFinancial Scammers Often Prey on People With Early DementiaMore Alzheimer's Drug Trial Failures: Are Researchers on the Wrong Track?Gum Disease Shows Possible Links to Alzheimer'sBrain Scans Spot, Track Alzheimer'sFewer Periods May Mean Higher Dementia RiskOnly Spoken Words Processed in Newly Discovered Brain RegionRate of U.S. Deaths Tied to Dementia Has More Than DoubledEven Distant Relatives' History Could Up Your Alzheimer's RiskHealthy Diet Might Not Lower Dementia RiskDementia May Strike Differently, Depending on RaceHormone Therapy Linked to Slight Rise in Alzheimer's RiskSleep Apnea May Be Linked With Alzheimer's MarkerScientists Find 5 New Genes That Sway Alzheimer's RiskActive Brain and Body Are Powerful Weapons Against DementiaAre Hearing Loss, Mental Decline Related?Education No Match Against Alzheimer'sCould Gut Bacteria Be Linked to Dementia Risk?Plunging Temperatures a Threat to People With Alzheimer's
Questions and AnswersLinks
Related Topics

Only Spoken Words Processed in Newly Discovered Brain Region

HealthDay News
by -- Robert Preidt
Updated: Mar 27th 2019

new article illustration

WEDNESDAY, March 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A dementia study has led researchers to a brain region that processes spoken, not written, words.

Northwestern University researchers worked with four patients who had a rare type of dementia called primary progressive aphasia (PPA), which destroys language.

Although able to hear and speak, they could not understand what was said out loud. However, they could still process written words. For example, if they read the word "hippopotamus," they could identify a picture of a hippo. But if someone said the word "hippopotamus," they couldn't point to its picture.

Through their tests with these patients, the researchers were able to identify an area in the left brain that appears specialized to process spoken words.

"We always think of these degenerative diseases as causing widespread impairment, but in early stages, we're learning that neurodegenerative disease can be selective with which areas of the brain it attacks," said senior author Sandra Weintraub. She's a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and neurology at Northwestern's Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.

"The fact that only the auditory words were impaired in these patients and their visual words were untouched leads us to believe we've identified a new area of the brain where raw sound information is transformed into auditory word images," Weintraub explained in a university news release.

Because the study included only four patients, the findings are preliminary. But the study authors said further research could improve understanding of this type of dementia and lead to therapies for it that focus on written, rather than spoken, communication.

"It's typically very frustrating for patients with PPA and their families," said Weintraub. "The person looks fine, they're not limping and yet they're a different person. It means having to readjust to this person and learning new ways to communicate."

The study was published March 21 in the journal Cognitive and Behavioral Neurology.

More information

The National Aphasia Association has more on primary progressive aphasia.