‘Dystextia’: Muddled texts can signal stroke, doctors say

An MRI of a pregnant woman’s brain showed a stroke in the region of the brain connected to language.

(Credit: Archives of Neurology)

Most of us have sent a garbled text or two (or dozens) in our day, and probably received more than our share as well. But such disoriented messages can in some rare cases move beyond the parlance of speedy modern-day communication to signal a health emergency, Harvard scientists caution.

In a study published online in the Archives of Neurology last week, the researchers coin the term “dystexia” to describe a confused text message that may indicate neurological dysfunction.

They cite the case of a 25-year-old pregnant woman who sent her husband a series of confusing messages about their baby’s due date following a routine doctor’s appointment.

Him: So what’s the deal? Her: Every where thinging days nighing Her: Some is where! Him: What the hell does that mean? Him: You’re not making any sense.

Concerned, the husband rushed his wife to the emergency room, where doctors determined she was having a stroke and suffering from dysphasia (also known as aphasia), an impairment of communication abilities common to brain injury and even complex migraine headaches.

Fortuna… [Read more]

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