Intensive language training in the rehabilitation of chronic aphasia: efficient training by laypersons

J Int Neuropsychol Soc. 2007 Sep;13(5):846-53. doi: 10.1017/S1355617707071111.


Intense language training has been found to be more efficient in the rehabilitation of chronic aphasia than treatment spread across time. Intense treatment, however, challenges personnel and financial resources of the health care system. The present study examined, whether laypersons can be trained to apply standardized language training for chronic aphasia with effects comparable to training by experts. Twenty individuals with chronic aphasia participated in the training, Constraint-Induced Aphasia Therapy (CIAT), which comprises communicative language games with increasing level of difficulty in a motivating context for 3 hr/day on 10 consecutive days. Following a random-control design, training was applied either by experienced therapists (n=10) or trained laypersons (n=10). Standardized language assessments revealed significant within-group improvements, however, between-group differences were not present. We conclude that a standardized training program, such as CIAT, can be efficiently accomplished by trained laypersons with results comparable to that of experienced therapists.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aphasia / rehabilitation*
  • Chronic Disease
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Language Tests / statistics & numerical data
  • Language Therapy / methods*
  • Male
  • Medicine / methods*
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Specialization*
  • Treatment Outcome