Semin Speech Lang 2024; 45(02): 152-166
DOI: 10.1055/s-0044-1780532
Adult Research Article

“Good,” “Hopeless,” and “Alright”: People with Aphasia Expressing Their Opinions on Their Rehabilitation Experiences

1   Communication Research Australia, Rankin Park, New South Wales, Australia
› Author Affiliations
Funding Sources No funding was involved in the conduct of this research or the preparation of the article.


Treatment for people with aphasia mainly concentrates on facilitating the communication of needs or providing facts. This focus is in danger of downplaying the significance of the expression of attitudes and emotion. Evaluative expression is critical for recreating identity and social interaction. However, the linguistic expression of emotions following aphasia has been insufficiently explored. This study aimed to determine which semantic-lexical devices people with aphasia used to express their opinions and views about their clinicians and rehabilitation. In-depth interviews with 50 people with aphasia describing their emotions during their rehabilitation were analyzed using the appraisal framework comprising appreciation, affect, and judgment. Speakers also graded their attitudes toward people, things, or events. Almost half of instances expressed appreciation, over one-third expressed judgment, and about 16% expressed affect. Amplification of emotions was used frequently, in over 40% of instances. Affective difficulties following aphasia and other brain injuries are among the most important factors for rehabilitation, social reintegration, and the burden on family members. To ameliorate these issues, the focus of rehabilitation in aphasia needs to shift from expressing needs toward facilitating the expression of opinions and feelings and providing people with aphasia with the opportunities and means to express their views on their healthcare.

Publication History

Article published online:
26 February 2024

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