Main navigation

You are here: About aphasia

About aphasia

Aphasia is a communication disability which occurs when the communication centres of the brain are damaged. It is usually caused by stroke, but can also be caused by brain haemorrhage, head injury or tumours.

Aphasia is more common than you would think. We estimate there are around 250,000 people living with aphasia in the UK.  About a third of people who have a stroke will have aphasia. So you may not have heard of aphasia but you probably know someone who has it – perhaps a relative or a friend. 

Each person with aphasia experiences it differently. Some people cannot speak at all, some people have just a few words. Others can no longer read, write or use numbers.

Everyday activities such as having a conversation, answering the phone, watching television, may suddenly become a source of profound frustration and anxiety both for the person with aphasia and for their families, friends and carers.