Therapeutic effects of intensive voice treatment (LSVT LOUD<sup>®</sup>) for children with spastic cerebral palsy and dysarthria: A phase I treatment validation study

2017-12-05T13:10:15Z (GMT) by Carol A. Boliek Cynthia M. Fox
<p><i>Purpose</i>: The aim of the present study was to validate and extend the evaluation of treatment outcomes following LSVT LOUD® in children with dysarthria secondary to cerebral palsy (CP).</p> <p><i>Method</i>: Seven children (5 females, 6–10 years) with spastic quadriplegia and dysarthria received LSVT LOUD. Outcomes included: (<i>a</i>) quantitative and qualitative indices of communication and social functioning representing therapeutic effects and (<i>b</i>) features of the acoustic signal representing physiological effects on the speech mechanism. A matched group of typically developing children served as controls. Testing occurred just prior to (<i>PRE</i>), immediately following (<i>POST</i>), and at 12 weeks post-treatment (<i>FUP</i>).</p> <p><i>Result</i>: Expert listeners preferred voice quality and articulatory precision of children with CP at <i>FUP</i> as compared to <i>PRE</i>. Acoustic data indicated improvements on select measures of vocal functioning at <i>POST</i> with some maintenance at <i>FUP</i>. Single word intelligibility improved immediately <i>POST</i>, but was not maintained at <i>FUP</i>. Parents rated positive changes in characteristics of voice and speech and qualitative changes in communication at both <i>POST</i> and <i>FUP</i>.</p> <p><i>Conclusion</i>: The present study validated some of the previous LSVT LOUD outcomes in children with dysarthria and CP and extended our understanding of therapeutic effects through qualitative data obtained from extensive parent interviews.</p>