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word retrieval problems (dysnomia)

(18 Posts)
sphil Tue 30-Aug-11 17:53:04

DS1 (10), who has a diagnosis of dyspraxia, has just had an assessment for dyslexia. We havent had the results yet but it looks as if he is only borderline. However, the area of the assessment he did very badly on was word retrieval. He found it incredibly difficult to name categories of things or to name things beginning with a certain letter. He went blank after naming two or three things ( had 30 secs).

I am not surprised by this as he has always been quite hesitant and rambling when he talks. He has a wide vocabulary and general knowledge, but struggles to express himself fluently in speech. He uses a lot of fillers - ers and ums, repeating phrases - and as a result is sometimes quite hard to follow, although this is improving as he gets older. The content of his speech is often quite complex, which makes it worse!

The other part of the assessment he couldnt do at all was a 'spoonerisms' test, where the assessor said ' lazy dog', for example, and he had to say
'dazy log'. He just froze - couldnt even make an attempt.

Does anyone have any experience of this and anything we can do to help?

auntevil Tue 30-Aug-11 18:12:15

Only thing I have with DS1 (dx also dyspraxia) is the spoonerisms. When he was younger 5-7 ish, we made him repeat the word 5 times correctly really fast. He had to start again if he kept getting it wrong. It really worked to start - now we have to have more of a competitive element - with his other DS or me as to who can do it quicker/better/fastest.
One i'm still working on is light sabre - or as DS says light saver. Can't see obi wan too worried about the leccy bill somehow! grin

mrsbaffled Tue 30-Aug-11 19:23:17

My DS (7) also says light saver. He cannot hear the "B" no matter how many times I say it....

cornsilksi Tue 30-Aug-11 19:56:49

that sounds like the phonological assessment battery
was that the only assessment administered and who carried it out?

anonandlikeit Tue 30-Aug-11 20:06:42

ds2 has word retreval difficulties & the SALT set up a school programme, I'll have a rummage in his files & see if i have a copy here.
I think it was basically lots of picture games with ds2 identifying items, i'll post some more if i can find the salt stuff.

anonandlikeit Tue 30-Aug-11 20:08:50

oh & also we have discovered that lots of what we & the salt thought were word retrival issues is actually just a very slow processing speed for language, giving him plenty of time without prompts & interuptions actualy means he is able to find the word himself.

dolfrog Tue 30-Aug-11 20:33:28


you might find these Wikipedia articles of interest, although they are not the best supported by referenced research
Dysnomia (disorder)
Speech disorder
Speech-Language Pathology

sphil Tue 30-Aug-11 22:38:55

It was a full diagnostic assessment, administered by the neuro-developmental therapist who's been working with DS for the last year. It included:
digit memory test
phonological assessment battery
symbol digit modalities test
Wechsler Individual Achievement Test
Wide Range Intelligence Test

Anon - I think it may be slow processing speed here too. He does know the words - just takes ages to find them. He also muddles past tenses sometimes - tooken for taken, droved for driven. We dont have light saver but we do have indidigestion! And he finds it very difficult to distinguish between 'f' and 'th'.

We had the assessment done so we can see where his strengths and weaknesses lie - I very much doubt he will be weak enough in any area to qualify for extra help in school, except possibly extra time in exams.

sphil Tue 30-Aug-11 22:41:43

Sorry - forgot to say thanks Dolfrog. I had a look at those articles earlier - very interesting. Have to say that dysnomia fits DS to a tee, from toddler age to now. When he was 3 he used to say ' Its a ra- rum' if you asked him 'What's that?' and he couldnt find the word.

cornsilksi Thu 01-Sep-11 08:39:02

The word retrieval part of the Phab (fluency test alliteration and fluency test rhyme)assesses phonological fluency - 'retrieval from memory of phonological codes based on alliteration and rhyme'
There is also a non-phonological fluency test (fluency test semantic)which is included for the purpose of providing a comparison between retrieval of phonological and non-phonological codes. How did he do on that sub-test?

sphil Fri 02-Sep-11 22:10:06

What sort of questions would have been in that part of the test Cornsilk? I was only earwigging from the next room, and we havent had the results yet, but I could hear how easy or difficult he was finding the spoken parts of the asssessment.

cornsilksi Sat 03-Sep-11 11:09:42

the non phonological fluency test asks the child to list things to eat and names of animals in 30 secs.

sphil Wed 07-Sep-11 18:03:58

Yes he did that one and was quite slow and hesitant - I think he got no more than 4 or 5 things in 30 secs. He has a very wide general knowledge, but responding on demand under pressure of time is very hard for him.

cornsylk Thu 08-Sep-11 17:14:26

have you had the results yet?

sphil Thu 08-Sep-11 17:24:14

No, not until 21st Sept

cornsylk Thu 08-Sep-11 17:25:12

if you knew how many he got correct in 30 secs I could score it for you

sphil Fri 09-Sep-11 22:13:30

I think he did four different categories and got no more than five in each of them.

sphil Fri 09-Sep-11 22:14:01

But I wasnt in the room, just listening, so Im not sure.

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