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Woman’s accent changed after brain injury

21st June 2013

The woman, who was a bus driver and a member of the Army Reserves prior to the accident, now states that due to the symptoms of her head injury she is a recluse.

She sustained the brain injury as well as a broken jaw in a serious road traffic accident, and, during her recovery, began to slur her words. Medical professionals stated that this was happening because of the strong medication she was on.

However, it became clear that she had begun to speak in a strong French accent. Now, her daughter usually speaks for her when they are in public places, and she suffers from depression and anxiety.

“It makes me so angry because I am Australian. I am not French [though] I do not have anything against the French people.”

Her diagnosis apparently makes hers only the second ever recorded case of FAS in Australia. Since the condition was first recorded in 1907, there have only been around 20 people worldwide diagnosed with the syndrome.

Studies seem to show that the condition develops when certain areas of the brain which control speech are damaged.

If the accident the woman was involved in was non-fault, she might have been able to claim compensation for the long-term effects of her head injury.

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