MedSchool: Ace Your OSCEsThe Medical Company
GET - On the App Store
Speech Exam


On this page:Circumlocution


    • How to Assess

    • Items around the room - point to objects and ask the patient to name them. Avoid frequently named items such as pen and watch - ask them to name objects such as cufflink or stethoscope.
    • Pictures of items - show drawings of objects and ask the patient to name them.
    • Significance

    • Inability to name items is classically a sign of anomic aphasia.


  • Circumlocution is the act of talking around a specific word, rather than saying it directly. For example, instead of ‘pen’ the patient might say ‘a tool that I use to write with’.
    • Significance

    • Suggests the presence of anomic aphasia.
Want more info like this?
  • Your electronic clinical medicine handbook
  • Guides to help pass your exams
  • Tools every medical student needs
  • Quick diagrams to have the answers, fast
  • Quizzes to test your knowledge
Sign Up Now