Perspectives on Stuttering Response to Onslow & Packman (2001) Letter to the Editor
Letter to the Editor  |   June 01, 2001
Perspectives on Stuttering
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Nicoline Grinager Ambrose
    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Ehud Yairi
    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / Speech / Letters to the Editor
Letter to the Editor   |   June 01, 2001
Perspectives on Stuttering
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2001, Vol. 44, 595-597. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2001/048)
History: Received December 14, 2000 , Accepted March 8, 2001
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2001, Vol. 44, 595-597. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2001/048)
History: Received December 14, 2000; Accepted March 8, 2001
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1

We did not, and do not, contest Onslow and Packman’s claim that it can be difficult to decide if a young child is stuttering. Our conclusion does indeed leave room for some cases that may not be clear. Nor does their claim, in any way, negate ours and others’ conclusion—based on several sets of data derived from different groups by different investigators using different measures—that there are clear differences in the disfluency patterns of stuttering and normally fluent children, even close to onset. Furthermore, at present, there are not good data that shed light on the extent of the difficulty of positive versus negative diagnoses of stuttering in working clinical settings.

As Dean Williams (1978) said, “The word ‘stuttering’ is an evaluative word, not a descriptive one” (p. 285). We examined children evaluated as stuttering and then described their disfluent behaviors. Onslow and Packman have raised some important issues that require clarification, and we appreciate this input. We respectfully disagree with their conclusions, however, and stand by the findings of our article, with the change in subject criteria as mentioned above. We look forward to future presentation of original data by Onslow and Packman to further explore the issues presented in this series of exchanges.

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