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Patients with probable Alzheimer's disease
(AD) often have difficulties associated with semantic knowledge.
Therefore, conceptual apraxia, a defect of action semantics
and mechanical knowledge, may be an early sign of this
disease. The Florida Action Recall Test (FLART), developed
to assess conceptual apraxia, consists of 45 line drawings
of objects or scenes. The subject must imagine the proper
tool to apply to each pictured object or scene and then
pantomime its use. Twelve participants with Alzheimer's
disease (NINCDS–ADRDA criteria) and 21 age- and education-matched
controls were tested. Nine Alzheimer's disease participants
scored below a 2-standarddeviation cutoff on conceptual
accuracy, and the three who scored above the cutoff were
beyond a 2-standard-deviation cutoff on completion time.
The FLART appears to be a sensitive measure of conceptual
apraxia in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease.
(JINS, 2000, 6, 265–270.)
Phonological alexia and agraphia are acquired disorders
characterized by an impaired ability to convert graphemes
to phonemes (alexia) or phonemes to graphemes (agraphia).
These disorders result in phonological errors typified
by adding, omitting, shifting, or repeating phonemes in
words during reading or graphemes when spelling. In developmental
dyslexia, similar phonological errors are believed to result
from deficient phonological awareness, an oral language
skill that manifests itself in the ability to notice, think
about, or manipulate the individual sounds in words. The
Auditory Discrimination in Depth (ADD) program has been
reported to train phonological awareness in developmental
dyslexia and dysgraphia. We used a multiple-probe design
to evaluate the ADD program's effectiveness with a
patient with a mild phonological alexia and mixed agraphia
following a left hemisphere infarction. Large gains in
phonological awareness, reading and spelling nonwords,
and reading and spelling real words were demonstrated.
A follow-up reassessment, 2 months posttreatment, found
the patient had maintained treatment gains in phonological
awareness and reading, and attained additional improvement
in real word reading. (JINS, 1998, 4,
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