Patients with damage to Wernicke’s area have a difficult time understanding spoken and written words, and cannot repeat phrases or name objects easily (Drago & Foster, 2011). It may be easier to comprehend visual material, like pictures, than words and speech; cognitive abilities outside of language are usually intact (Drago & Foster, 2011). Their speech is fluent, grammatically correct, and with normal cadence but may not make sense and is often nonsensical jargon (Drago & Foster, 2011). They may use words that make no sense or are non-existent in their speech, demonstrating a deficit in being able to cue up the proper word to match their intended meaning (Drago & Foster, 2011). Additionally, patients are typically not aware of their errors and may not realize that they are not making sense (Drago & Foster, 2011). As with most brain injuries, recovery is limited. However, non-invasive brain stimulation, neurotransmitter drug therapy, and speech therapy are all treatment options currently available – the first two mentioned are in trial phases, but nonetheless may give hope of further recovery for patients in the future (National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, 2017).
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