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Internationally Adopted Children With Unilateral Cleft Lip and Palate-Consonant Proficiency and Perceived Velopharyngeal Competence at the Age of 5.

Journal article
Authors AnnaKarin Larsson
Carmela Miniscalco
Hans Mark
Johnna Schölin
Radoslava Jönsson
Christina Persson
Published in The Cleft palate-craniofacial journal : official publication of the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association
Volume 57
Issue 7
Pages 849-859
ISSN 1545-1569
Publication year 2020
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Health and Rehabilitation
Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology
Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Plastic Surgery
Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Otorhinolaryngology
Pages 849-859
Language en
Subject categories Logopedics and phoniatrics, Audiology, Plastic surgery


To compare consonant proficiency, consonant errors, and the perceived velopharyngeal (VP) competence in internationally adopted (IA) children with unilateral cleft lip and palate (UCLP) and nonadopted (NA) children with the same cleft-palate type at age 5.Case-control study based on phonetic transcriptions of standardized speech recordings of 5-year-olds at a tertiary hospital.Twenty-five IA children were compared to 20 NA children. All consecutive patients at a cleft lip and palate center participated.Consonant proficiency was measured using percentage consonants correct, percentage consonants correct-adjusted for age, percentage correct place, percentage correct manner, and consonant inventory. Cleft speech characteristics (CSCs), developmental speech characteristics (DSCs), and the perceived VP competence were also measured.The IA children had significantly lower values for all consonant proficiency variables (p < .05) and a smaller consonant inventory (p = .001) compared to the NA children. The IA children had a higher frequency of CSCs (IA = 84%, NA = 50%, p < .05) and DSCs (IA = 92%, NA = 65%, p = .057), and twice as many IA children as NA children had perceived VP incompetence (IA = 52%, NA = 25%, p = .17).Severe speech disorder was more common in IA children than in NA children at age 5. Most importantly, the speech disorders seem to be not only cleft-related. More detailed speech assessments with a broader focus are needed for IA children with UCLP. Longitudinal studies are recommended to further investigate the impact of speech difficulties in IA children's daily lives.

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