Verbal Patients Who Say Little : A Syndrome of Nondominant - Hemisphere Deficits

  • Published 2013


A syndrome of nondominant-hemisphere deficits primarily affects some women, often causing serious problems in interpersonal re­ lationships and in work. As a result. these women are frequently referred for psyehiatric evaluation and treat­ ment. If (he nature of the problem is unrecog­ nized (which is often the ca",). the "therapy" thflt fn!lmys i~ wmaUy unslicce"sfui. Right~or nondominant-hemisphere dysfunction has received attention over the past decade. 11Je right hemisphere. richer in association areas and myelinated fiber tracts Illan its counterpart. is thought to have more connections to different parts of the brain Illan the left hemisphere. Several adjectives have been used to con­ trast the differential functioning of the cere­ bral hemispheres. The left hemisphere is de­ picted as linear and sequential in its working mode. while the right hemisphere is assigned a more synthetic and integrative mooe. Research has tended to support the popu~ lar notion lhatthe left brain is more "analytic­ while the right brain is more global. more synthetic. Semrud-Clikeman and Hynd have s.uggested that a neuroanatomic substrate ex­ ists, pointing QUt Illat the left brain has pre~ dominantly short fibers between modalities. which would be most adaptable (0 analyzing and categorizing data. while the long. myeli­ nated interregiona( finers of the right hemi­ sphere are better suited to bringing many inputs together in a process of integration. Neurologists and neuropsychiatrfsts alike have de<cribed right-hemisphere syndrome<, the best known being Ihc syndrome of denial and neglect that is so frequently seen in stroke patients. Aprosody, an inability to invoke or comprchend the affective component of lan­ guage, is thought to arise from right-hemi~ sphere lesions. The nondomimmt hemi­ sphere. according to Bear, mtl)' have a central role in the production and expression of emo­ tion. mirroring the left hemisphere in the production of langnage. The richest literature describing clinical nondominnnt-hemi$phere syndromes is gen­ erated hy neuropsychologists in their ,vork with learning·disabled children. Learningdis abililics "ffect mainly boys who have trouble with reading and language. A n"mber of researchers havedescrihed patients with "non­ verballeaming diffiCl.lties"-verbal children, mostly girls, whose learning, in the broadest sense, is impaired, These verbal chi1dren use kmg(wge in an odd way and are often unable tocomrrehcnd nonverbal cues:, They do poorty in novel situatIons and have great difficulty comprehending the ambiguilY that accompa­ nies interpersonal relationships. Children", ith llOO\erballeaming disal>ili­ by Frederic E. Oder, M.D.

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@inproceedings{2013VerbalPW, title={Verbal Patients Who Say Little : A Syndrome of Nondominant - Hemisphere Deficits}, author={}, year={2013} }