How long does it take to regain speech after a stroke?

A fellow caregiver asked...

My uncle had a stroke two months ago. His recovery has been good so far. The stroke affected his right side slightly but the worst part is that his speech is gone. He can say a fey words like yes, no and ok. Its very hard to talk to him and he gets upset when he can't talk back. I was just wondering how long does it usually take for his speech to come back?


Expert Answer

James Castle, M.D. is a neurologist at NorthShore University HealthSystem (affiliated with The University of Chicago) and an expert on strokes.

Unfortunately, speech disturbance is one aspect that recovers slowly, if ever. In general, recovery from a stroke is not as predictable as it is in other diseases. Take for example a broken arm: you set the bone, place a cast, wait a few weeks, and the bone recovers. In stroke, although improvement from the initial symptoms is the rule, there is a tremendous amount of variability in the degree of progress. Although some patients return to normal, many others make only modest strides, and some have little or no improvement. In general, the vast majority of recovery is seen in the first 6 months after the stroke, although people often tell stories of continued recovery out to 2 years.