APRAXIA & TREATMENT
Definition: What is "Apraxia"?
Apraxia is a neurological disorder that is characterized by the loss of ability to carry out or execute learned movements, such as speech, despite having the physical ability & desire to perform such movements.
Treatment: How to Treat "Apraxia"?
There is no known & proven treatment for apraxia. Some therapies are only used for improving the effectiveness of communication. Some techniques used for aplaxia include traditional articulate therapy, singing, finger tapping & EMG feedback to reduce tension.
Apraxia can be an acquired or developmental disorder of motor planning. However, apraxia is not caused by sensory loss, incoordination or failure to understand simple commands. Apraxia is commonly found in patients with damages to their left hemisphere, accounting to 50% of patients, while 10% of patients have damages to their right hemisphere. In addition, patients of Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, diseases of the basal ganglia & progressivesupranuclear palsy usually develop Apraxia as an associated symptom.
There are several types of apraxia, including apraxia of speech, limb kinetic, ideomotor, ideational, eyelid opening, gait, construction, oculomotor & buccofacial. 1) Apraxia of speech - a condition wherein the patient develops a motor speech disorder, which is characterized by an impaired ability to generate speech sounds. It is different from other language & speech defects, such as stuttering or dyarthia. Speech apraxia comes in two forms - acquired & developmental. With acquired speech apraxia, an individual can become affected at any age, caused by injuries to the brain responsible for speech, which results in loss of their existing speech ability. On the other hand, developmental apraxia is present since birth & affects more boys than girls. 2) Limb kinetic apraxia - a disorder wherein patients lose finger & hand dexterity, which results from inability to connect. 3) Ideomotor apraxia - a neurological disorder wherein patients lose their ability to imitate gestures. This occurs when the left hemisphere, especially the parietal lobe, is damaged. 4) Ideational apraxia - a disorder wherein patients become incapable of planning or discriminating between gestures; they simply do not know what to do. 5) Apraxia of eyelid opening - a disorder wherein patients are incapable of voluntarily opening their eyes. This condition is usually associated with blepharospasm & it rarely occurs as an isolated disorder. 6) Constructional apraxia - a disorder caused by a lesion in the patient's right cerebral hemisphere, resulting in the inability to construct elements in a normal fashion to form a meaningful item, such as drawing or building blocks. 7) Oculomotor apraxia - a rare degenerative condition characterized by difficulty of moving eyes from side to side caused by a disorder in the nervous system. 8) Buccofacial apraxia - a condition wherein patients cannot perform simple skilled movements related to the tongue, lips & mouth, such as coughing, winking & whistling on command.