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About Primary Progressive Aphasia

PPA symptoms are a result of degeneration in the speech and language areas of the brain including the frontal, temporal, and parietal lobes. Symptoms typically begin before the age of 65. In initial stages of the disorder, symptoms primarily involve speech and language, although each variant affects a specific subset of these areas.

  • Nonfluent/agrammatic PPA symptoms include motor speech and grammar impairments
  • Logopenic PPA symptoms include word-finding and repetition difficulties due to impairments in the phonological system
  • Semantic PPA symptoms include word-finding and single-word comprehension deficits due to a loss of semantic knowledge

PPA can be a result of varied underlying diseases, but typically this disorder is caused by frontotemporal lobar degeneration or Alzheimer’s disease. An estimated 40% of individuals with frontotemporal lobar degeneration have PPA.

Treatment

Currently, there are no medications to cure PPA and its underlying disease. However, behavioral treatment with a speech-language pathologist can often help individuals maintain current communication abilities as well as explore alternative forms of communication (e.g., nonverbal communication using gestures, pointing, low-tech or high-tech devices, etc.) to help meet communication needs as the disorder progresses.

Care Team approach

Collaborating with an interprofessional team helps us develop a tailored treatment plan specific to your needs. We have assembled a team of experts that includes specialists in neurology, geriatric psychiatry, neuropsychology, nursing, clinical social work and speech and language pathology. Whatever your needs, our team is here to listen and work with you to develop a treatment plan that is right for you.