Strength, Endurance, and Stability of the Tongue and Hand in Parkinson Disease Weakness and fatigue in the orofacial system often are presumed to contribute to the dysarthria associated with neuromotor disorders, although previous research findings are equivocal. In this study, tongue strength, endurance, and stability during a sustained submaximal effort were assessed in 16 persons with mild to severe Parkinson disease (PD) ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2000
Strength, Endurance, and Stability of the Tongue and Hand in Parkinson Disease
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Nancy Pearl Solomon
    Department of Communication Disorders University of Minnesota Minneapolis
  • Donald A. Robin
    Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology and National Center for Voice and Speech University of Iowa Iowa City
  • Erich S. Luschei
    Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology and National Center for Voice and Speech University of Iowa Iowa City
  • Corresponding author: e-mail: nancy.p.solomon-1@tc.umn.edu
  • Currently affiliated with San Diego State University
    Currently affiliated with San Diego State University×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Special Populations / Older Adults & Aging / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2000
Strength, Endurance, and Stability of the Tongue and Hand in Parkinson Disease
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2000, Vol. 43, 256-267. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4301.256
History: Received February 9, 1999 , Accepted July 13, 1999
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2000, Vol. 43, 256-267. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4301.256
History: Received February 9, 1999; Accepted July 13, 1999

Weakness and fatigue in the orofacial system often are presumed to contribute to the dysarthria associated with neuromotor disorders, although previous research findings are equivocal. In this study, tongue strength, endurance, and stability during a sustained submaximal effort were assessed in 16 persons with mild to severe Parkinson disease (PD) and a perceptible speech disorder. The same measures were taken from one hand for comparison. Only tongue endurance was found to be significantly lower in these participants than in neurologically normal control participants matched for sex, age, weight, and height. Analyses of data from a larger sample comprising the present and retrospective data revealed lower-than-normal tongue strength and endurance in participants with PD. No significant correlations were found between tongue strength and endurance, interpause speech rate, articulatory precision, and overall speech defectiveness for the present and previously studied participants with PD, bringing into question the influence of modest degrees of tongue weakness and fatigue on perceptible speech deficits.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by a New-Investigator Grant awarded to the first author from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation and by Grant No. P60 DC00976 from the National Institutes on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. The study was conducted while the first author was an Assistant Research Scientist at the University of Iowa’s Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology and the National Center for Voice and Speech. A portion of the data analysis and manuscript preparation were supported by the Department of Communication Disorders at the University of Minnesota. Preliminary data were presented at the 1994 Conference on Motor Speech, Sedona, AZ.
We are grateful to Adriana Rodriguez, who was supported by the Opportunities at Iowa Summer Research Training Program, for help with participant recruitment and data analysis, Tamara Nielsen for preparation of the perceptual study and speech rate analysis, and Katie Larson for the stability analysis. We acknowledge the software and hardware development for this project by Bruce Clark and Kelvin Lehrman and the statistical support provided by William Clarke and Edward Carney. Finally, we appreciate the feedback from Michael Cannito, Christopher Dromey, Geralyn Schulz, and one anonymous reviewer on a previous version of this manuscript.
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