Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology
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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 23  |  Issue : 8  |  Page : 156-161

Quality of communication life in people with aphasia: Implications for intervention

Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, St. Cloud State University, St. Cloud, MN, USA

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Grama N Rangamani
Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, St. Cloud State University, Brown Hall 103, 720 4th Ave. S., St. Cloud, MN 56301
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/aian.AIAN_557_20

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Background and Aims: The main goals were to determine the effectiveness of two commonly used communication-related Quality of Life (QoCL) measures, and the impact of aphasia-related factors on quality of life (QoL) and QoCL in persons with aphasia (PWAs). Method: Twenty-one PWAs ranging from 47 to 91 years of age with post-onset periods of 2 months to 14 years were tested using standardized and criterion-measure tools to assess their language and cognitive functions, QoL, and QoCL. Additionally, participants completed a demographics questionnaire, which also included information on their stroke and the kinds of therapies they had received. Assessments were conducted over two sessions with randomized order of test administrations to control fatigue and order effects. Results and Discussions: Correlation-matrix was used to determine the strength of relations between test measures. The impact of QoL related factors (viz., aphasia severity, cognitive functioning, time post-onset, and therapy received) on QoCL was examined using ANOVAs. The ASHA Quality of Communication Life Scale (ASHA-QCL) had more significant correlations with other QoL measures than the ASHA-Functional Assessment of Communication Skills (ASHA-FACS). Aphasia severity, cognitive deficits, and therapy received contributed significantly to QoL and QoCL in PWAs. Conclusions: Evaluating overall QoL may not fully reveal the QoCL in PWAs. Measuring QoCL specifically is crucial in aphasia interventions, and it is equally important to use sensitive tools that can capture the QoCL effectively. ASHA-QCL was more effective than ASHA-FACS in capturing the QoCL. QoCL must be considered even when working with PWAs with severe aphasias and/or mild cognitive deficits.

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