Photo: JAMA Archives of Neurology
Doctors discovered a woman’s stroke after her husband became worried as her texts stopped making sense.The researchers have named this symptom “dystextia.”
According to Bradley Voytek at Oscillatory Thoughts blog:
She was brought into the emergency room after the following text message conversation with her husband about their baby’s due date (P – patient; H – husband):
H: So what’s the deal?
P: every where thinging days nighing
P: Some is where!
H: What the hell does that mean?
H: You’re not making any sense.
H: July 24, right?
H: July 30?
H: Oh ok. I’m worried about your confusing answers
H: Think what?
P: What i think with be fine
Usually these kinds of difficulties pop up in normal speech as well (known as dysphasia), but because the woman had recently had an upper respiratory infection, she was speaking quietly anyway, which disguised her issues. The report was published this week, Dec. 24, in the journal Archives of Neurology.
The left insula, where this woman’s stroke hit, is the area of the brain that coordinates speech. She quickly improved after treatment and is fine. Not all incomprehensible texts are a sign of stroke, the researchers warned Reuters:
“Many smartphones have an ‘autocorrect’ function which can introduce erroneous word substitutions, giving the impression of a language disorder.”
Autocorrect, said [Sean] Savitz, a professor of neurology, can confuse matters – even for doctors.
“I have often joked with my colleagues when using the dictation of the smartphone, that it gives me an aphasia,” he said. “Potential for lots of false positives!”
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