Cognitive Intervention Case Studies: Language Intervention for Patients With Dementia Attending a Respite Program Patients with dementia exhibit a variety of cognitive-linguistic deficits including memory impairments, anomia, reduced attention, and impaired pragmatics (Bayles & Kaszniak, 1987). These impairments are all within the domain of treatment for speech-language pathologists. In fact, the ASHA advocates the participation of speech-language pathologists in the evaluation and treatment ... Article
Article  |   December 01, 1998
Cognitive Intervention Case Studies: Language Intervention for Patients With Dementia Attending a Respite Program
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Kimberly Johnson
    The Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Michelle Bourgeois
    The Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
Article Information
Cognitive Intervention Case Studies
Article   |   December 01, 1998
Cognitive Intervention Case Studies: Language Intervention for Patients With Dementia Attending a Respite Program
SIG 2 Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, December 1998, Vol. 8, 11-16. doi:10.1044/nnsld8.4.11
SIG 2 Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, December 1998, Vol. 8, 11-16. doi:10.1044/nnsld8.4.11
Patients with dementia exhibit a variety of cognitive-linguistic deficits including memory impairments, anomia, reduced attention, and impaired pragmatics (Bayles & Kaszniak, 1987). These impairments are all within the domain of treatment for speech-language pathologists. In fact, the ASHA advocates the participation of speech-language pathologists in the evaluation and treatment of this population (ASHA, 1988). Clinicians have participated extensively in the evaluation process, but have been somewhat reluctant to treat this population, due to the degenerative nature of the disease.
Treatment of patients with dementia requires clinicians to focus on developing innovative strategies to help clients compensate for the disabilities associated with the disease, with less emphasis on treating impairments. An emerging body of research provides evidence that the disability of dementia can be reduced through well-designed treatment protocols (e.g., Bourgeois, 1990,1992, 1993; Bourgeois, Burgio, Schulz, Beach, & Palmer, 1997; Bourgeois & Mason, 1996; Santo Pietro & Boczko, 1998). Bourgeois (1992)  demonstrated that participants in her study maintained gains in communication skills at 24 and 30 months post-intervention in spite of increases in cognitive impairment. Her study indicates that clinicians can implement training programs that help clients with dementia reduce the disability that they experience as a result of their impairments.
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