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Speech and Communication Changes Reported by People with Parkinson's Disease

Journal article
Authors E. Schalling
K. Johansson
Lena Hartelius
Published in Folia Phoniatrica Et Logopaedica
Volume 69
Issue 3
Pages 131-141
ISSN 1021-7762
Publication year 2017
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Health and Rehabilitation
Pages 131-141
Language en
Keywords Speech, Voice, Swallowing, Communication skills, Dysarthria, Parkinson's disease, Speech-language, quality-of-life, intensive voice treatment, multiple-sclerosis, treatment lsvt(r), fatigue, participation, disorders, prevalence, individuals, impairment
Subject categories Otorhinolaryngology, Neurosciences


Background: Changes in communicative functions are common in Parkinson's disease (PD), but there are only limited data provided by individuals with PD on how these changes are perceived, what their consequences are, and what type of intervention is provided. Aim: To present self-reported information about speech and communication, the impact on communicative participation, and the amount and type of speech-language pathology services received by people with PD. Methods: Respondents with PD recruited via the Swedish Parkinson's Disease Society filled out a questionnaire accessed via a Web link or provided in a paper version. Results: Of 188 respondents, 92.5% reported at least one symptom related to communication; the most common symptoms were weak voice, word-finding difficulties, imprecise articulation, and getting off topic in conversation. The speech and communication problems resulted in restricted communicative participation for between a quarter and a third of the respondents, and their speech caused embarrassment sometimes or more often to more than half. Forty-five percent of the respondents had received speech-language pathology services. Conclusions: Most respondents reported both speech and language symptoms, and many experienced restricted communicative participation. Access to speech-language pathology services is still inadequate. Services should also address cognitive/linguistic aspects to meet the needs of people with PD. (C) 2018 S. Karger AG, Basel

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