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'Now I am myself’: exploring how people with post-stroke aphasia experienced Solution Focused Brief Therapy within the SOFIA Trial

Northcott, S. ORCID: 0000-0001-8229-5452, Simpson, A., Thomas, S., Barnard, R. ORCID: 0000-0003-4319-9550, Burns, K., Hirani, S. ORCID: 0000-0002-1577-8806 and Hilari, K. ORCID: 0000-0003-2091-4849 (2021). 'Now I am myself’: exploring how people with post-stroke aphasia experienced Solution Focused Brief Therapy within the SOFIA Trial. Qualitative Health Research, doi: 10.1177/10497323211020290


Aphasia, a language disability, can profoundly affect a person’s mood and identity. The experiences of participants who received Solution Focused Brief Therapy, a psychological intervention, were explored in the SOlution Focused brief therapy In post-stroke Aphasia (SOFIA) Trial. Thirty participants with chronic aphasia, 14 with severe aphasia, participated in in-depth interviews, analyzed using Framework Analysis. Two overarching themes emerged: valued therapy components (exploring hopes, noticing achievements, companionship, sharing feelings, relationship with therapist); and perceptions of progress ( mood, identity, communication, relationships, independence). Participants were categorized into four groups: (1) ‘changed’, therapy had a meaningful impact on a person’s life; (2) ‘connected’, therapy valued primarily for companionship; (3) ‘complemental’, therapy complemented a participant’s upward trajectory; and (4) ‘discordant’, therapy misaligned with participants’ preference for impairment-based language work. This study suggests it is feasible to adapt a psychological therapy for people with aphasiawho perceive it as valuable.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License ( which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (
Publisher Keywords: aphasia; psychological therapy; Solution Focused Brief Therapy; SOFIA Trial
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine
Departments: School of Health Sciences > Healthcare Services Research & Management
School of Health Sciences > Language & Communication Science
Date available in CRO: 07 May 2021 10:38
Date deposited: 7 May 2021
Date of acceptance: 29 April 2021
Date of first online publication: 15 June 2021
Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution International Public License 4.0.

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