Every year, almost 20 million people suffer a first-time stroke and about a third of them have aphasia. Although aphasia often resolves spontaneously, many patients have persistent language disturbances. A conservative estimate of the number of people who require acute post-stroke speech therapy is one to two million each year (China: 200,000, Europe: 100,000, US: 50,000).
Unfortunately, in developing countries, there are few resources for post-stroke speech therapy. There, language recovery often depends on random interactions within families and communities. In developed nations, though most patients do receive treatment, the intensity – a few hours per week over a few months – is categorically considered to be insufficient.
It has recently been suggested that intense daily listening to audio files on smartphone and tablets allows for efficient language learning even in subjects 60 years and older (www.Ear2Memory.com). Here we present an Android application for aphasic patients (OLIENA 1.0, Google Play™: www.bsk1.com/oliena) which displays videos of a person pronouncing words or short sentences. Each video is played in a loop until the patient proceeds to the next word. We recommend daily use of at least 30 minutes (better: 60 to 90 minutes) and, according to personal need and time availability, continuous training for months or years.
OLIENA has interfaces for patients and administrators (caregivers, speech therapists, physicians, etc.).
OLIENA is an open platform for the creation of individualized content (videos, words, pictures) in any language.