Collections > Scholarly Posters and Presentations > Outcomes for caregivers of post-stroke individuals with aphasia vs. without aphasia: A systematic review

Aphasia is an acquired language disorder that can affect all modalities of communication, including speaking, listening, reading, and writing (ASHA, 2016). The most common cause of aphasia is stroke, which is an interruption of blood flow to areas of the brain, usually located in the left hemisphere, that influence language expression and/or comprehension. These communication difficulties, undeniably, impact the person with aphasia (PWA) and their overall quality of life before, during, and after the recovery process. However, the caregivers of PWA are not only an important part of the recovery process, but are indirectly impacted by the aphasia itself, defined by a concept known as third-party disability . According to the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF), third-party disability describes the effect of an individual's health condition on a caregiver's disability (WHO, 2001). However, little research has been conducted to determine the impact of aphasia on caregivers, although one study has suggested that potential challenges may include changes in family members' communication (Grawburg, Howe, Worrall & Scarinci, 2013;Le Dorze & Brassard, 1995). Understanding potential challenges and difficulties can provide insight into the impact on caregivers of PWA and how their outcomes may differ from caregivers of post-stroke individuals without aphasia (PWOA). In order to gain greater understanding about the effects of aphasia on a caregiver's quality of life and report these findings to professionals working with such individuals, a systematic review was conducted to focus on the outcomes for caregivers of PWA versus caregivers of PWOA.