The effects of early Alzheimer`s disease on the language of a recovering monolingual aphasic: the study of Mr. I’s language
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This study set out to establish the extent to which linguistic segments have been affected by dementia of Alzheimer’s type in a recovering aphasic in phonology and morphology. The study had two objectives: a) to investigate how the subject’s pronunciation patterns has been affected by early dementia of Alzheimer’s type by establishing which phonemes got substituted by which, which phonemes were added and which vowels were lengthened. b) to find out to what extent the subject’s grammar and lexis has been affected by early dementia of Alzheimer’s type by establishing which type of word finding difficulties were manifested, which inflectional morphemes were deleted and what entailed neologisms. Collection of data was elicited using an IC Sony recorder to record the subject’s spontaneous speech and reading exercises. Relevant information regarding the subject background and condition concerning the study was sought from his doctor and his wife. The collected data was presented in tables and then discussed. The study found that the subject’s pronunciation was characterized by phoneme substitutions, phoneme additions and vowel lengthening. Phonemes were substituted the most followed by additions and vowel lengthening. The study also found out that the use of fillers, vocalized space fillers, repetitions and empty pauses manifested word finding difficulties. The English past tense morphs and the progressive marker were deleted while neologisms resulted from clipping and blending of words.
University of Nairobi