The National Aphasia Association is heartbroken to hear of Wendy Williams’ diagnosis of PPA (Primary Progressive Aphasia), a type of Frontotemporal Degeneration (FTD).  The diagnosis, released by her medical team today, is familiar to many after the 2022diagnosis of actor Bruce Willis.  As the national organization that represents all individuals living with aphasia and their families, we understand the impact of this diagnosis.


Aphasia is a disorder that can affect a person’s ability to produce and/or comprehend language. There are many different forms of aphasia. All of them affect a person’s ability to communicate. One type of aphasia, termed Primary Progressive Aphasia (PPA), is caused by neurogenerative disease, so the ability to speak becomes more challenging over time. Other cognitive abilities also become impacted.


While PPA/FTD can be varied in its presentation for every individual, we do recognize that strong family support and expert professional services have a positive impact on living successfully with aphasia. Speech-language pathologists are an important part of the care team
and can provide families with strategies to help with communication. Further, we are so very grateful that Ms. Williams and her team are sharing this information for the awareness and advocacy aspects of the disease.


The NAA appreciates our strong PPA Task Force/Programs and offers gratitude for Dr. Treasyri Williams Wood sharing the following informative video about PPA through her work with the The Margo Fowler Family Foundation.



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The Mission of the National Aphasia Association is to promote public awareness and understanding of aphasia, to promote research that aims to improve the lives of people with aphasia, and to provide support to all persons with aphasia and their caregivers.
The NAA envisions a society in which aphasia is a commonly understood word and where all persons with aphasia, regardless of individual differences, their families, health professionals, and the public have access to appropriate education and resources that would enhance their potential for an acceptable quality of life.


Image: Ilya S. Savenok, Getty Images for Spotify. Copyright: 2020 Getty Images.