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Word Sticks
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Word Sticks

Have you experienced "word sticks", "word sticks" are when you are speaking about something, you know what word you want to say, but your mouth will not get it out, so you keep trying, by repeating the previous word or phrase, but still cannot get out the word.

For me, when this happens, I usually will try to find a different word (that may still have the same general meaning) or I will "spell the word out".  This lets the person know, that I know what word I want to say, but cannot get it out.
If I get too frustrated (and I often do) if they say the word, I will try to repeat it, or I will skip the word (since they already said it) and continue on with what I was trying to express.

This sometimes happens in multiples, meaning not the same sentence but several times (different words) different sentences or thoughts.

Believe it or not, one word that I almost always have a "word stick" with, is "frustration".

How many of you, have word sticks?
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13 Comments Post a Comment
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338416_tn?1260996698
Yup, same here.  I often have a hard time finding the exact word I'm looking for, but the synonym is readily available.  It's frustrating, because the other words are never quite the right one - so I keep trying different synonyms until the word pops up, or the other person helps me out.
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429700_tn?1308011423
Yes, I have this.  I've had very embarrasing moments when in front of large groups of people and had this happen.  Each time, I was caught off-guard.  One time, I find out that my grant application was accepted, and was asked to say something about what I was going to use the money for.  I cannot even believe it now, but when I had to speak, I couldn't even remember what the application was for.  I remembered nothing about it.  Even when I sat back down in my chair red-faced.  I had to go to my computer, where my application was stored, to figure out what it was.  Then, it was like I was looking at someone else's application.  

Another time was when I ran into a close friend when I was out shopping.  I couldn't remember her name!  I was so startled that I couldn't speak to her.  I went home and cried for hours and tried like crazy trying to figure it out.  I finally went through a baby name book and found it.  

This was all pre-MS diagnosis before I had any idea what was going on.  I thought it was a brain tumor or Alzheimer's.  It has been the most disabling symptom that I've experienced.  I have been improving, but I still have trouble with getting the right word out.  This may be the reason I retire on disability.  I will never admit this to anyone--not even my closest friends.

Provigil has helped me tremendously.  Without it, I'm much like a rock, and still . . .  I have my moments.  My biggest problem is with names, but I will forget how to spell simple words or the names of objects I use every day.  Plus, I have had that experience when I cannot repeat a word, even when someone tells me the word.  

How ironic that you will get hung up on the word "frustration".  Maybe a little frustration feeds into the cognitive dysfunction or dysphagia symptoms.  Emotions and MS work against each other sometimes.   Just like the embarrassement factor for me magnifying the actual disability about 100 times.  

Have you talked to your neuro about this?  There may be medicines that could help.
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Avatar_m_tn
hmm.. this is all bad news to me.. my wife describes this exact speach issue and is in the hospital now being tested for the source of shaking that is preventing her from walking. Current diagnoses is hyper thyroid and damaged liver due to thyroid issue.. but no cause has been isolated..
brainscans came back normal. thyroid scan today. ran ultrasound on liver and found damage on Saturday 2-13-10...
Anything yoiu guys can tell me to have the drs look for that is definitive.. for MS, Lupus, Lime Disease, Parkinsons.. is welcomed.. or maybe its something else.
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338416_tn?1260996698
Cognitive problems come from a number of sources - at this point it's hard to say what the cause is.  But if the doctors are looking at her, that's a good thing.  Has she had an MRI with contrast yet?
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Avatar_m_tn
I really like the term word sticks, but I don't think it goes quite far enough for me. I sometimes wonder how anyone can understand me at all.

There are really 3 modes of operation for me in this area. The first one is like was described were you can't think of a word and end up using another word that means the same thing. Second is but can't figure out how to say the word. The final mode is where my mind just picks a random word to say. For instance I might be wanting to say something like "stove" and instead will say something like "strap" or "dove". It is like my mind just picks a word somewhere near the word I am trying to say and uses it.

Of course at any time the modes may also combine. This really makes for some wierd conversations and looks. :) And if that is not bad enough at times when writing things I have simular problems where I can't get the right words. Instead of not being able to pronounce a word I can't figure out how to spell it. But otherwise the modes are the same.

Dennis


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338416_tn?1260996698
I've had that too - instead of using the word telegram, I'll say 'hotel.'  If I'm typing, I'll use the homonym of the word rather than the one I'm looking for.  For example, writing 'four' instead of 'for.'

The brain is a crazy place!  I've learned not to get too worked up about it, and try to take things slow.
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429700_tn?1308011423
Socrates- Thanks for the thread.  I sometimes feel a little out there when it comes to symptoms like this, and I feel a little comfort in the fact that other people share the same difficulties.  

Jen- I have the same trouble with the homonyms, too!  The brain is crazy!  I know the difference, but will still type a homonym.  

Austin- Welcome to the MS forum.  I hope you post about your wife on a separate thread.  Hit the button "Post Question"  at the top.  I'd hate for your post to be overlooked about your wife, and I know others would like to give you a proper welcome and love to respond:).  

Deb
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Avatar_f_tn
This sounds like what I call "tip of the tongue syndrome" - my work colleagues got used to me stopping mid-sentence and staring at them, sometimes they would come up with the word for me. It could be quite amusing if they came up with completely the wrong word giving a whole different meaning to what I was trying to say!

Mand
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987762_tn?1331031553
Last night my temp was up, not sure why, it wasn't that hot here yesterday but i felt out of kilter, my skin hot to touch, my body heavy but i could maybe put it down to gardening. Anyway, I start talking to my dh and he's confusing me by his responses, like we were having two different conversation eg.

JJ: I feel so hot i think i need to put the dishwasher on
DH: well thats ok but make sure you put it on a cold rinse
JJ: where's the thing? what do you mean by cold rinse, do i need to flush it?
DH: OH sory i thought you were being funny, you mixed your words again and i was playing along. You said dishwasher in stead of airconditioner!
JJ: Did I? I feel stranger than today
DH: (he notices what i'm doing) ok time for you to sit down

I'm busily pulling out random items instead of knives and forks for dinner, whats so odd about that, doesn't everyone use a lemon squeezer, spoon, splade and a spachula to eat with.

I get stuck on words but i dont think i'm repeating them, more inserting wrong words, or not being able to say or remember the word, if its a noun it will just get lost somewhere between my brain and tongue. Most of the time i think i'm catching the wrong word before i say it, i often have huge pauses before a noun.

In comparrison to what it was like almost a year ago, well its chalk and cheese, its getting better and better everyday. Some days it doesn't happen at all, just have to not get too hot, too tired, do to much physcial, multi task, etc etc and i'm good to go!

Cheers.....JJ
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Avatar_f_tn
So is this definite MS issue, cause I have the EXACT problems, and am in the process of getting a dx.  I did tell my neuro about this.  It's so wierd, I'll be talking to my hubby, and I'll be thinking of a specific thought and word, and a totally different word will come out instead.  I'm constantly saying and writing things backwards. While I'm typing, I'm constantly having to rewrite cause it types out backwards.  I was an English major, and now my husband teases me about my vocabulary, instead of the other way around.  So are all of you dx MS?

Sandie
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211940_tn?1267884866
Mine seem to hinge on words beginning with letters, example b, f, & p.

Again, "frustration", 5/6 times

Socrates
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987762_tn?1331031553
Check out this site, give you a idea of whats going on, not much detail but simple to read. There are different classes of dyphasia too.

http://www.gpnotebook.co.uk/simpleprocess.cfm?querystring=dysphasia

Sandie: I'm not dx, but my understanding is if this type of thing is newly acquired, (i'm 45 and "was" classed as verbally gifted) then the only logical explanation is brain malfunctioning from a ABI, stroke, TIA, alcholism (alcoholism)/drugs or lesions. Alone there could be other explanations but in my case i would have to have a plethra of seperate medical issues which makes the odds very unlikely.

In my research so not discounting anything i experience, there is common theme, i'm left with lesions but only one lite up (1.5T MRI without contrast), give it time and i'm sure more will show them selves. There is a lot just coming out about the cognitive deficites of MS, there seems to be a lot of weight to the theory of significant cog defs happening, separetly to the number of lesions, which i find interesting to note.

Cheers....JJ
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987762_tn?1331031553
oops that should read 'separetly to the number of visible lesions'

cheers...JJ
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