Aphasia can globally or selectively affect comprehension and production of verbal and written language. Discourse analysis can aid language assessment and diagnosis.
 To explore narratives that produce a number of valid indicators for diagnosing aphasia in speakers of Brazilian Portuguese.  To analyze the macrostructural aspects of the discourse of normal individuals.  To analyze the macrostructural aspects of the discourse of aphasic individuals.
The macrostructural aspects of three narratives produced by aphasic individuals and cognitively healthy subjects were analyzed.
A total of 30 volunteers were examined comprising 10 aphasic individuals (AG) and 20 healthy controls (CG). The CG included 5 males. The CG had a mean age of 38.9 years (SD=15.61) and mean schooling of 13 years (SD=2.67) whereas the AG had a mean age of 51.7 years (SD=17.3) and mean schooling of 9.1 years (SD=3.69). Participants were asked to narrate three fairy tales as a basis for analyzing the macrostructure of discourse. Comparison of the three narratives revealed no statistically significant difference in number of propositions produced by the groups. A significant negative correlation was found between age and number of propositions produced. Also, statistically significant differences were observed in the number of propositions produced by the individuals in the CG and the AG for the three tales.
It was concluded that the three tales are applicable for discourse assessment, containing a similar number of propositions and differentiating aphasic individuals and cognitively healthy subjects based on analysis of the macrostructure of discourse.
discourse analysis; aphasia; language assessment