A case of literal alexia: evidence for a disconnection syndrome

S Sevush, K M Heilman
Brain and Language 1984, 22 (1): 92-108
We describe a patient with literal alexia, agraphia, and only minimal aphasia, resulting from a left occipito-parietal ischemic infarction. Neither impaired visual processing nor impaired oral output could explain the patient's letter reading deficit, since he retained the ability to match letters of mixed case, and remained able to spell aloud and to pronounce and comprehend orally spelled words. His residual word reading was characterized by better performance for nouns and highly imageable words than for functors , poorly imageable words, and nonwords. We propose that this patient's letter reading deficit was due to a partial disconnection of his visual from his linguistic systems, with residual word reading accomplished by a semantically mediated compensatory mechanism. We suggest, further, that the dissociations between word and letter reading observed in some alexic individuals may be attributed, in part, to a difference in the relative contributions of dorsal and ventral occipital structures to the reading process.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"