A Texas Woman Came Out Of Jaw Surgery With Foreign Accent Syndrome | KERA News

A Texas Woman Came Out Of Jaw Surgery With Foreign Accent Syndrome

Jun 24, 2016

Five stories that have North Texas talking: A Texas woman has had a British accent for six months post-jaw surgery; Jaap Van Zweden made bank in 2013; UNESCO leader condemned the death of a late North Texas journalist; and more.

Lisa Alamia of Rosenberg, Texas, southwest of Houston, doesn’t have her native drawl anymore. She had lower jaw surgery to correct an overbite in December, and six months later an accent swinging between various British dialects and an Australian twang persists, The Associated Press reported.


Neurologist Dr. Toby Yaltho of Houston Methodist Hospital Sugar Land said there weren’t any complications noted in the operative report causing the accent change, and he believes Alamia has a rare neurological condition called foreign accent syndrome, according to KTRK in Houston.


According to AP: “Foreign accent syndrome is a rare medical condition that can result from trauma or an injury to the area of the brain that controls speech. The cause is often unknown, but it has been linked to strokes, head injuries and psychiatric conditions. Speech therapy can help patients restore their usual accents.”


Alamia told KTRK she knows it seems skeptical, but even it took her awhile to say “y’all”. She hopes to regain her original Texas accent in the future. [The Associated Press, KTRK, KHOU]


Video from KHOU:

  • It pays to be the symphony director in Dallas. A 2016 compensation report revealed Jaap Van Zweden, the Dutch conductor of Dallas Symphony Orchestra made $5,110,538 during the 2013-14 season. Drew McManus, who wrote the report, determined the numbers using 990 tax filings. Symphony spokesperson Denise McGovern clarified Van Zweden’s salary in 2013 was $1,788,997, and the rest of the amount was a signing bonus, funded entirely by an individual’s private gift, for a long-term contract extension through the 2020-21 season. Still, that was a $3,321,541 signing bonus, and by 20-21, Van Zweden will be the conductor of the New York Philharmonic, where the conductor earned more than $1.75 million in 2013. [Adaptistration]
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