American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

ASHA Glossary: Broca's Aphasia

A type of nonfluent aphasia, so called because speech production is halting and effortful. Damage is typically in the anterior portion of the left hemisphere. The dominant feature is agrammatism (impaired syntax). Content words (nouns, verbs) may be preserved but sentences are difficult to produce due to the problems with grammar, resulting in "telegraphic speech." In its more severe form, spoken utterances may be reduced to single words. Comprehension is usually mildly to moderately impaired due to difficulty understanding complex grammar, but it can be within normal limits. Repetition of words and sentences is usually poor.

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