Differences Between Broca's and Wernicke's Aphasia

Topics: Aphasia, Brain, Traumatic brain injury Pages: 7 (2402 words) Published: April 12, 2013
Human beings occasionally suffer bad damage to particular parts of their brains. Unfortunately, these injuries may lead to major failure of speech production, understanding language and comprehension which most of the patients suffer it permanently. This impairment is called Aphasia. Gayle (2012) states that people with aphasia fail to understand sentence comprehension although it is a simple sentence. She also mentioned that aphasia patients also have difficulty in reading and understanding speeches. According to Fromkin, Rodman and Hyams (2011), aphasia is a scientific term used to explained language disorder due to brain injuries caused by diseases or trauma. In other words, aphasia involves partial or total loss of the ability to articulate ideas due to brain damage. Fromkin et. al (2011) point out that Broca’s aphasia is resulted from injury to the frontal part of the brain that controls language while Wernicke’s aphasia is resulted from damage to the back portion of the language dominant side of the brain. According to Fromkin et. al (2011), Broca’s aphasia which also known as motor aphasia, agrammatic aphasia and non-fluent aphasia was discovered by Paul Broca in 1864 when he did an experiment to eight patients who had language disorder because of brain damage. Paul Broca found out that all injuries were at the front part of the left side of the brain functions to control language. Therefore, the impairment was called after his name. Meanwhile, Fromkin et. al (2011) add that Wernicke’s aphasia also has some other names that associated with the deficit which known as fluent aphasia, sensory aphasia or jargon aphasia. The name was taken after the founder of the affliction, Carl Wernicke. “In 1874, Carl Wernicke has presented another paper on patients who diagnosed with injury to the back part of left side of the brain. His findings confirmed the results by Greek physicians before him who had associated loss of speech with paralysis on the right side of the body” (Fromkin et. al, 2011).This means Broca’s and Wernicke’s aphasias are resulted from any damages that happened to the left side of the brain which is dominant for language. There are some differences between Wernicke’s and Broca’s aphasias in terms of location, causes and symptoms of these deficits. Firstly, the differences between these deficits are in terms of location. Although Broca’s area and Wernicke’s area are situated on left side of the brain, the location of these areas are not the same. The Broca’s area is show in the figure below:

Figure 1: Location of Broca’s area. Source:http://images.search.yahoo.com/images/view As can be seen from the Figure 1, Broca’s area (red colour) is situated at the front part of the left side of the brain. According to Fromkin et. al (2011), the function of this area is to produce speech and to combine word to form a complete sentence using proper syntax before uttering it. Thus, the patient is unable to produce speech and putting words together in a perfect form when this area is damaged. In addition, the patient who is diagnosed with Broca’s aphasia is known as Broca’s aphasic, the one who had difficulty in words production as mentioned by Fromkin et. al (2011). O’Grady, Dobrovolsky and Katamba (1996) elaborate that Wernicke’s area is located at the back part on the left section of the brain. It is responsible for language processing. However, when the brain is injured and affected this area, patients are unable to understand the speeches of others because the functioning part has been interrupted due to those injuries. Hence, this situation brings damages to the brain and affects the patient’s speech comprehension. Moreover, the patient with Wernicke’s aphasia is called Wernicke’s aphasic. Figure 2 shows the Wernicke’s area.

Figure 2: Location of Wernicke’s area. Source: http://images.search.yahoo.com

Secondly, another difference is regards in causes. There are many causes that lead to Broca’s and...

References: Croot, K., Ballard, K. Leyton, C.E., Hodges, J.R., Smith, A., Zieglar, W. (2012). Apraxia of Speech
and Phonological Errors in the Diagnosis of Nonfluent/ Agrammatic and Logopenic Variants of Primary Progressive Aphasia
Dede, Gayle. (2012). Effects of Word Frequency and Modality on Sentence Comprehension Impairment in People With Aphasia. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 103-114. doi: 10.1044/1058-0360(2012/11-0082).
Fromkin, V., Hyams, N., Rodman, R. (2011). An Introduction to Language (9th ed.).
Wadsworth Cengage Learning.
Kaur, R. and Wolff, M. (2012). Aphasia Treatment Program. Retrieved from
McCaffrey, P. (2009).Cerebral Lobes, Cerebral Cortex, and Brodmann 's Areas. Retrieved
from http://www.csuchico.edu/~pmccaffrey//syllabi/
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorder. (October,2008).
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