This is a tough one, but I present it with all the respect possible.
In the same way that Demi Moore posted it.
You may know that Bruce Willis had to retire from acting due to his Aphasia diagnosis.
It has apparently gotten very bad.
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This is so tough to see, but here is Bruce celebrating his birthday…from Demi Moore:
Happy birthday, BW! So glad we could celebrate you today. Love you and love our family.
Thank you to everyone for the love and warm wishes – we all feel them. pic.twitter.com/vcb50QP9hr
— Demi Moore (@justdemi) March 20, 2023
Demi and family wishing Bruce Willis happy birthday ☺️😞 pic.twitter.com/JRH12dXaCS
— cutigers 🧡💜🐅✝️🐰🐇🐣🐣 (@cutigs1) March 20, 2023
Tragic and heartwarming all at the same time.
Bruce Willis ❤️
Via Instagram (brucewillisbw) pic.twitter.com/ve1oYyJETs
— 𝗔𝗹𝗯𝗲𝗿𝘁𝗼 𝗕𝗼𝗿𝗿𝗲𝗹𝗹𝗮 (@albeertobrr) March 19, 2023
That one is more inspiring.
Demi Moore shares a touching video as Bruce Willis’ family celebrate his birthday pic.twitter.com/b8eDENDWrs
— Geek Vibes Nation (@GeekVibesNation) March 20, 2023
Bruce Willis has celebrated his 68th birthday with a song and a cake, surrounded by his family, after it was announced he had been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia (FTD).
More here: https://t.co/0Tt0aIvDIw pic.twitter.com/S0cf2dEP87
— Sky News (@SkyNews) March 20, 2023
Here’s what Aphasia means, from HealthLine:
The family of Bruce Willis has announced that the actor will step away from his career due to a diagnosis of aphasia, which is affecting his cognitive abilities.
“As a result of this and with much consideration, Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him,” his family said, without revealing what might have caused Willis’ condition.
Sanam Hafeez, PsyD, an NYC-based neuropsychologist and director of Comprehend the Mind, told Healthline that strokes are the most common cause of aphasia, and affect up to 40 percent of stroke survivors.
“It can happen suddenly,” she said. “After a stroke, head injury, or gunshot wound — but may develop slowly if there is a brain tumor, infection, or progressive neurological disease.”
What is aphasia?
Hafeez explained that aphasia is caused when there is damage to the language-dominant side of the brain, usually the left side, and can be brought on by:
“The symptoms of aphasia can vary from person to person, depending on which type they have,” she said.
There are different types of aphasia
According to Hafeez, aphasia symptoms vary depending on which part of the brain is affected.
“For example, those with Broca’s aphasia, also known as expressive aphasia, may eliminate the words ‘and’ and ‘the’ from their language, speaking in short but meaningful sentences,” she said.
Hafeez pointed out that that part of the brain is also essential for motor movements, so people with expressive aphasia often suffer from right-sided weakness or paralysis of an arm or leg.
Another type is called Wernicke or receptive aphasia.
This makes people tend to speak in long confusing sentences, add unnecessary words or create new words, and have difficulty understanding what others are saying, said Hafeez.
But global aphasia may affect our ability to communicate even more severely.
“People with global aphasia may find it difficult to speak or comprehend language as a whole,” she said.
Can sometimes affect intelligence
Dr. Jay Pathmanathan, medical director, Beacon Biosignals, adjunct assistant professor of neurology at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, and medical director at Crozer-Chester Medical Center School of Clinical Neurophysiology said it’s difficult to say whether aphasia affects intelligence.
“Since the ability to communicate, which is what aphasia affects, reflects much of what we consider intelligence,” he said.
Pathmanathan added that, depending on the cause, aphasia might occur without any impairment in emotional intelligence – our sense of right and wrong, or ability to feel emotions.
However, it’s different if the problem is a neurodegenerative disease that causes brain cells to “die off.”
In that case, Pathmanathan said, aphasia is typically associated with loss of intelligence and changes in the person’s behavior.
“Though this may be a very slow process, gradually worsening over years,” he said.
Like living in a foreign country
“I tend to view aphasia as one of my professors described it — like living in a foreign country where you can’t understand the language,” said Pathmanathan.
“You know when people are happy, sad, or angry. You can probably express how you’re feeling as well — but only in limited ways,” he continued. “If that country’s language is similar to yours, you might even be able to convey some of your thoughts. But fundamentally, you are still you.”
Some communication may not be affected
With aphasia, people may still be able to communicate in some form, “but conveying thoughts and complex desires can be limited or impossible,” explained Pathmanathan.
“It depends on the parts of the brain involved and the underlying cause,” he said.
Pathmanathan said there are very rare types of aphasia where only one form of communication is involved.
“For example where someone might be able to write but not speak. But in general, the language problem affects all forms of communication; speaking, writing, texting, and so forth.”
Aphasia affects two million Americans, according to the National Aphasia Association (NAA), but a 2016 survey from the organization found that less than nine percent of respondents knew what the condition was.
Thanks to celebrities like Bruce Willis who are sharing their experience with the language disorder, more people are beginning to understand just how serious it can be.
The actor recently celebrated his 68th birthday alongside all five of his daughters. While his wife, Emma Heming Willis, called her husband’s recent birthday celebration “a good day” on Instagram Stories, per People, aphasia doesn’t always allow for good days.
Bruce’s family initially announced in March 2022 that he would be retiring from acting after being diagnosed with aphasia because the condition was “impacting his cognitive abilities,” as Heming Willis wrote on Instagram. “As a result of this and with much consideration Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him,” she wrote in the post.
Then, this February, Rumer Willis announced on Instagram that her father’s aphasia has progressed to frontotemporal dementia (known as FTD), a group of brain disorders impacting the front and temporal lobes of the brain, which can result in language, behavioral, and personality changes, per Mayo Clinic.
“Unfortunately, challenges with communication are just one symptom of the disease Bruce faces. While this is painful, it is a relief to finally have a clear diagnosis,” Rumer added.
Here’s how I like to remember him….
Did you know he could sing?
The legendary BRUCE WILLIS celebrates his 68th birthday today 🎂🥳
Here he is on TOP OF THE POPS in 1987 with THE TEMPTATIONS performing his No.2 hit…
…UNDER THE BOARDWALK. pic.twitter.com/nmuw23hPd5
— James Leighton (@JamesL1927) March 19, 2023
Screw Aphasia, he’ll always be John McClain to me:
Bruce Willis – John Mcclain pic.twitter.com/hh6jYvk48Q
— InterstellarKev (@ThatsKev4U) February 19, 2023
Just think Bruce Willis / John McClain in Die Hard.
Clearly the NRA and its Minions think fictional entertainment
to be a solid basis for policy.@MalcolmNance @jheil @JoeNBC @Lawrence @JoyAnnReid @MaddowBlog @lasesana @davidfrum pic.twitter.com/16CjoivbWe
— louis renault (@spiritofrenault) February 25, 2018
Welcome to the party, pal:
Not to mention Bruce Willis is John McClain. pic.twitter.com/H0B3fFBhby
— 🖤Katt Devereux🖤 (@TheOriginal_Leo) July 7, 2021
Come out to the coast, we’ll get together, have a few laughs:
Hele familien er enige:
Bruce Willis er John McClain! pic.twitter.com/SDe3rrAvfc
— Liselotte Egeberg (@SylleSvb) July 15, 2021
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