What is aphasia, the disease diagnosed in Bruce Willis?

Bruce Willis’ family announced yesterday that they have been diagnosed with the disease aphasia – although many fans won’t know much about such a diagnosis

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Bruce Willis appears in the trailer for the 2022 action film A Day to Die

Bruce Willis was recently reported to have been diagnosed with aphasia, with his family announcing he will be retiring from his career as a result.

This was announced on social media yesterday, with them explaining that it had been a “really challenging time” amid his health issues which had affected his cognitive abilities.

The 67-year-old actor, best known for playing John McClane in the Die Hard franchise, will have brought recognition to the condition fans may not have heard of before.

It is thought that aphasia is typically caused by damage to the left side of the brain – for example after a stroke – and often presents as speech or language difficulties.

Bruce Willis’ family said he was diagnosed with the disease aphasia


AFP via Getty Images)

Accordingly the NHSPeople with this condition can have trouble reading, hearing, speaking, and writing — although this is generally associated with language problems.

It states: “Speech problems are perhaps the most obvious, and people with aphasia can make mistakes with the words they use.” However, it “does not affect their intelligence.”

The condition is said to be caused by damage to parts of the brain responsible for understanding and producing language. There are several possible reasons for this.

Bruce, pictured with his family, is stepping down from acting after recent diagnosis


Getty Images for Goop)

The NHS notes that the most common cause of aphasia is stroke, although it can also be caused by serious head injury, a brain tumor and neurological conditions.

It can affect people of any age but is typically seen in those over the age of 65, with the main form of treatment for the condition being speech and language therapy.

The success of such therapy may depend on the cause of the aphasia, although most people who have it after a stroke recover to some extent with treatment.

The actor is best known for his role in the Die Hard franchise


(Getty Images)

Bruce’s family have yet to reveal the circumstances surrounding his aphasia diagnosis, having only said that he previously had “some health issues”.

The Mirror asked its representatives for comment.

His departure from acting was announced yesterday in a statement from his family on social media, signed by his close relatives, including his five daughters.

Bruce was married to Demi Moore from 1987 to 2000, although they have been close ever since



It said: “As a family we wanted to share that our beloved Bruce has been experiencing some health issues and has recently been diagnosed with aphasia which is affecting his cognitive abilities.”

The family then said, and “with much consideration,” that he was “retiring from the career that has meant so much to him” — for which he has won multiple awards.

They continued in the statement, “This is a truly challenging time for our family and we are so grateful for your continued love, compassion and support.”

He has been married to Emma Heming Willis since 2009, with whom he shares his two youngest children



“We are going through this as a strong family unit and wanted to include his fans because we know how much he means to you just as you do to him,” the family continued.

They said Bruce – whose films include Pulp Fiction, The Fifth Element and The Sixth Sense – always says “live it up,” and they plan to do just that together.

It was signed by his wife Emma Heming Willis, 43, ex-wife Demi Moore, 59, and their daughters; Rumer, 33, Scout, 30, Tallulah, 28, Mabel, nine, and Evelyn, seven.

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https://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/celebrity-news/what-aphasia-medical-condition-bruce-26598454 What is aphasia, the disease diagnosed in Bruce Willis?

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