What is wrong with Bruce Willis? Aphasia explained – main symptoms and condition in full

Aphasia: South Tees NHS explains condition's impact

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Hollywood heavyweight Bruce Willis has called time on his acting career following his diagnosis with aphasia. The actor’s family, including his wife Emma Heming-Willis and ex-wife Demi Moore, announced his condition on Instagram on Wednesday. Aphasia is “impacting his cognitive abilities”, the statement said.

“With much consideration Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him,” his family wrote in a joint statement.

“This is a really challenging time for our family and we are so appreciative of your continued love, compassion and support.”

What is aphasia?

Aphasia is when a person has difficulty with their language or speech.

It’s usually caused by damage to the left side of the brain (for example, after a stroke).

According to the NHS, people with aphasia often have trouble with the four main ways people understand and use language.

These are:

  • Reading
  • Listening
  • Speaking
  • Typing or writing.

As the NHS explains, speaking problems are perhaps the most obvious, and people with Aphasia may make mistakes with the words they use.

“This could be sometimes using the wrong sounds in a word, choosing the wrong word, or putting words together incorrectly,” explains the NHS.

What causes aphasia?

The Mayo Clinic explains: “The most common cause of aphasia is brain damage resulting from a stroke — the blockage or rupture of a blood vessel in the brain.”

According to the health body, loss of blood to the brain leads to brain cell death or damage in areas that control language.

It continues: “Brain damage caused by a severe head injury, a tumour, an infection or a degenerative process also can cause aphasia.

“In these cases, the aphasia usually occurs with other types of cognitive problems, such as memory problems or confusion.”

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