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Etymology edit

From French aphasie, from Ancient Greek ἀφασία (aphasía), from ἄφατος (áphatos, speechless), from ἀ- (a-, not) + φάσις (phásis, speech). Equivalent to a- +‎ -phasia.

Pronunciation edit

  • IPA(key): /əˈfeɪzɪə/, /əˈfeɪʒə/
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Noun edit

aphasia (countable and uncountable, plural aphasias)

  1. (pathology) A partial or total loss of language skills due to brain damage. Usually, damage to the left perisylvian region, including Broca's area and Wernicke's area, causes aphasia.
    • 1865, “Discussions upon Aphasia”, in Medical and Surgical Reporter[1], volume 8, page 197:
      The very disease aphasia is to most of us a new one; and we venture to say that even yet no one can give a satisfactory definition of Trousseau's new term.
    • 1865, J. T. Banks, “On the Loss of Language in Cerebral Disease”, in Dublin quarterly journal of medical science[2], volume 39, page 63:
      Of one form of aphasia we have an accurate description by Van Swieten, in his chapter on apoplexia:―"Vidi plures, qui ab apoplexiâ curati omnibus functionibus cerebri recte valebant, nisi quod deesset, hoc unicum, quod non possent vera rebus designandis vocabula invenire."
    • 1888, Rudyard Kipling, “The Conversion of Aurelian McGoggin”, in Plain Tales from the Hills, Folio, published 2005, page 76:
      The Doctor came over in three minutes, and heard the story. ‘It's aphasia,’ he said.
    • 2022 March 30, Maya Salam, “Bruce Willis Has Aphasia and Is ‘Stepping Away’ From His Career”, in The New York Times[3], →ISSN:
      Bruce Willis, the prolific action-movie star, has been diagnosed with aphasia — a disorder that affects the brain’s language center and a person’s ability to understand or express speech — and will step away from acting, his ex-wife, Demi Moore, announced in an Instagram post on Wednesday.

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