Patients with Alzheimer disease (AD) usually experience naming difficulty due to storage and access problems in phonological-lexical representation. Investigating naming response patterns followed by cueing may help us to understand the underlying mechanism of naming deficits in AD. A total of 221 patients with mild cognitive impairment and AD [Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) 0.5, 1, 2] were included as subjects. Sixty items of the Korean version of the Boston Naming Test were given, and upon failure, semantic/syllabic cues were verbally presented. From the results, even in the CDR 2 group, which is considered to be a moderate stage of AD, syllabic cues significantly facilitated correct responses. Our findings are in contrast with previous studies conducted with English-speaking patients, which reported that phonological-lexical representation may have been disrupted in the moderate stage of AD, and that none of the cues facilitated correct word retrieval. The difference may be ascribed to the fact that direct access to the phonological-lexical representation via syllabic cues was possible in the confrontation naming task performed by the Korean patients. It can be concluded that phonological-lexical representation in moderate stage Korean AD might be partially preserved because syllabic cues in AD patients were effective in facilitating target words.
- Alzheimer disease
- Mild cognitive impairment