The influence of premorbid language skills and behavior on language recovery in children with verbal auditory agnosia

Susan K. Klein, Roberto F. Tuchman, Isabelle Rapin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Previous studies of children with Landau-Kleffner syndrome and related language-epilepsy syndromes have focused on the relationship of seizure control to language recovery. We examined the effect of premorbid language skills and behavior, as well as some characteristics of clinical seizures and electroencephalograms, on language recovery in a retrospective study of 67 children with the severe receptive and expressive language disorder, verbal auditory agnosia. Fifty-eight percent of these children had seizures, 76% were autistic, and 24% had a history of language regression after showing previously normal language skills. The duration of language loss was not influenced by the persistence of clinical seizures. Premorbid language and behavior were more predictive of language recovery in these children. Most children with normal early language (acquired verbal auditory agnosia) had onset of language loss after age 3 years, in contrast to those with abnormal early language. Children with acquired verbal auditory agnosia were more likely to show fluctuations in language skills than those in other groups. Autistic children were more likely to begin having seizures before age 3 years, and had a longer duration of language loss and lower educational placement at time of last follow-up than those with normal behavior. This study emphasizes the importance of assessing premorbid language and behavior in predicting recovery of language skills in children with language-epilepsy syndromes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36-43
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of child neurology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Clinical Neurology


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