Therapy for naming disorders (Part I)

Principles, puzzles and progress

Lyndsey Nickels*, Wendy Best

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

89 Citations (Scopus)


This paper takes the form of a selective review of studies of therapy for aphasic-naming disorders. There is a bias in the literature towards studies involving the use of semantic tasks (particularly word-to-picture matching) in therapy and therefore this is reflected here. These studies provide clear evidence that aphasic naming disorders can be remediated but it remains difficult to ascertain the precise mechanism by which this improvement in naming is achieved. Several issues are discussed which pertain to this problem: the effectiveness of 'semantic' and 'phonological' tasks; the relevance of each component of the therapy task to the outcome of the therapy; the relationship between the type of deficit and the effectiveness of a task; when generalization can be expected as opposed to (treated) item-specific improvement; and the importance of patient success on the task to the success of the therapy. Finally, the paper concludes with suggestions for the possible direction of further research into this important area.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-47
Number of pages27
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1996
Externally publishedYes

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