Differential recovery of languages in a bilingual patient: a case study using selective amytal test

Brain Lang. 1990 Apr;38(3):449-53. doi: 10.1016/0093-934x(90)90127-3.


We performed a selective Wada test on a bilingual patient. While a left middle cerebral artery (MCA) injection produced global aphasia for both (Spanish and English) languages, the patient could only speak Spanish (his mother tongue) 1 min after he started to speak English. No language disturbances were observed after a right MCA amytal injection. These findings suggest that all of a multilingual's languages are stored within the verbal-dominant perisylvian region, and while the second language may be organized within the central Sylvian core, the first language may be better represented in more distal perisylvian areas.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Amobarbital*
  • Angiography, Digital Subtraction
  • Aphasia / diagnosis*
  • Aphasia / physiopathology
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Dominance, Cerebral / physiology*
  • Embolization, Therapeutic*
  • Humans
  • Intracranial Arteriovenous Malformations / therapy*
  • Language*
  • Male
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Speech Perception / physiology


  • Amobarbital