by EBSCO Medical Review Board
(Anomia, Aphasia-associated; Nominal Aphasia; Anomic Aphasia; Difficulty Naming Objects and People)


Aphasia-associated anomia is when a person has problems naming people and things.

Stroke—Most Common Cause of Aphasia
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This problem is caused by an injury to the brain. Stroke is the most common cause. Others are:

Risk Factors

This problem is more common in older adults. It is also more common in people who have:


A person with this problem has problems finding the right word when speaking and writing, such as:

  • Describing things in general instead of with specifics: “that place where you sleep” for “bedroom”
  • Saying what a thing does, but not what it is: “that thing you drive” for “car”

Most people can understand speech and read.


The doctor will ask about your symptoms and health history. A physical exam will be done. Speech language, and communication tests may be done. This is often enough to make the diagnosis. You may also need to see a doctor who treats the nervous system.

Other tests may be done to find the cause.


The cause will need to be treated.

Speech and language therapy will also be needed to:

  • Restore lost skills
  • Learn how to use existing skills
  • Learn other ways to communicate


There are no guidelines to prevent this problem. It is caused by underlying health problems, such as stroke.


National Aphasia Association 

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke 


The Aphasia Institute 

Health Canada 


Aphasia. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association website. Available at: Accessed April 16, 2020.

Aphasia. National Institute on Deafness and Other Communicative Disorders website. Available at: Updated March 6, 2017. Accessed April 16, 2020.

Aphasia information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke website. Available at: Updated October 1, 2019. Accessed April 15, 2020.

Lavoie M, Macoir J, Bier N. Effectiveness of technologies in the treatment of post-stroke anomia: A systematic review. J Commun Disord. 2017;65:43-53.

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: EBSCO Medical Review Board Rimas Lukas, MD
  • Review Date: 02/2020
  • Update Date: 04/16/2020