Assessing production and comprehesion of narratives in brain damaged adults with communicative deficit

Sergio Carlomagno, Lorenza Vorano, Carmelina Razzano, Andrea Marini


A number of experimental studies have shown that standardized aphasia assessment results do not allow predicting performance in the brain damaged subjects on discourse comprehension. It is then necessary in routine clinical activity with these subjects to have specific assessment tools. Furthermore, it has been shown that standardised functional evaluation of information content in elicited speech samples (picture description task) from the brain damaged subjects may offer reliable measures of discourse efficiency. In this study we describe an Italian version of the Discourse Comprehension Test (Brookshire & Nicholas, 1993) that was administered together with picture description task to subjects with and without brain damage. These speech samples were evaluated with standardized method (CIUs analysis by Nicholas and Brookshire, 1993). The results show that both methods have reliable diagnostic value useful for assessing discourse abilities in communicatively impaired brain damaged subjects. We also describe a single case follow-up study where these methods were used.


communication; discourse; aphasia assessment; brain damage; diagnosis

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Rivista di Psicologia Clinica. Teoria e metodi dell'intervento

Rivista Telematica a Carattere Scientifico Registrazione presso il Tribunale civile di Roma (n.149/2006 del 17/03/2006)

ISSN 1828-9363