Emotional, psychological and psychosocial problems of aphasic patients: An introduction

G. Gainotti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Emotional and psychosocial problems greatly influence the quality of life and the outcome of rehabilitation in aphasic patients. However, owing to the complexity of the problem and to the poverty of research tools enabling investigators to explore it effectively, they have usually received a limited amount of research. Since methodological and conceptual advancements have been made only in recent years in this field, this special issue of Aphasiology will try to give a sketchy account of this changing situation. The present article aims to provide an introductory survey of the whole field, by taking into account separately the three main factors (neurological, psychological and psychosocial) which usually interact in the life of aphasic patients. Neurological factors directly stem from disruption of specific neural mechanisms underlying the representation and control of emotional and social behaviour. Psychological factors consist of a variety of attitudes towards illness and disability which result from an implicit or explicit awareness of defects provoked by brain damage, and of their implications for the quality of life of the patient. Finally, the term 'psychosocial factors' refers to the consequences that the defect provoked by brain damage will have on the network of social activities and of social relationships of the patient, and to the quality of family life. Some general models aiming to give an integrated account of the emotional and behavioural problems of aphasic patients (with reference to neurological, psychological and psychosocial factors), as well as some instruments constructed having in mind these problems and these models, are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)635-650
Number of pages16
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology


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