Books Magazine

Foreign Accent Syndrome

By Dplylemd

Karen Butler had a dental appointment. All went well except for one little thing—when it was over she “talked funny.” Her dentist told her that once the pain and swelling resolved her voice would again be normal. Not true. Though Karen is American, she developed a new accent that seem to be a mixture of English, Irish, and other European languages. How is this possible?

There is a very rare neurological disorder called Foreign Accent Syndrome. It typically follows some form of brain injury such as trauma, stroke, or infection. There have been only around 100 cases identified. The accent can be anything–German, French, Chinese, anything.

In Karen Butler’s case she most likely suffered a small stroke while under dental anesthesia. This has not been proven yet but that’s most likely the underlying cause of her new accent.

An odd syndrome to say the least.



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