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A memory rehabilitation study was conducted with two patients with contrasting impairments in verbal short-term memory (STM): one with impaired phonological STM (pSTM) and one with impaired semantic STM (sSTM). Two treatments were employed, each designed to improve separate aspects of STM: phonological and semantic. The pSTM treatment selectively improved sensitivity to phonological effects in STM, and the sSTM treatment brought about increased lexical effects on verbal STM performance. There was also some evidence of type-specific generalisation to sentence comprehension, in that the pSTM patient showed post-treatment improvement on sentence repetition after the pSTM treatment, and the sSTM patient showed improved sentence anomaly judgement after the sSTM but not the pSTM treatment. The findings are discussed in relation to theories on the components involved in STM, and the role of STM in sentence processing.

Original publication




Journal article


Neuropsychol Rehabil

Publication Date





678 - 720


Phonological STM, Rehabilitation, STM, Semantic STM, Sentence Comprehension, Aged, Aphasia, Broca, Brain, Comprehension, Humans, Language, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Memory Disorders, Memory, Short-Term, Neuroimaging, Neuropsychological Tests, Phonetics, Semantics