Results of a Traditional Acupuncture Intervention for Stuttering It is important that researchers investigate alternative strategies for treating stuttering, as contemporary treatments are not entirely successful in reducing stuttering with all people. Furthermore, many who have been “successfully” treated suffer from high relapse rates in the long term. Acupuncture has been shown to be a promising treatment for ... Research Note
Research Note  |   June 01, 1995
Results of a Traditional Acupuncture Intervention for Stuttering
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Ashley R. Craig
    Department of Health Sciences, UTS New South Wales, Australia
  • Maree Kearns
    Australian College of Acupuncture New South Wales, Australia
  • Contact author: Ashley Craig, PhD, Department of Health Sciences, UTS, Level 14, PO Box 123 Broadway, NSW Australia, 2007. E-mail: a.craig@uts.edu.au
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / Speech / Research Notes
Research Note   |   June 01, 1995
Results of a Traditional Acupuncture Intervention for Stuttering
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1995, Vol. 38, 572-578. doi:10.1044/jshr.3803.572
History: Received April 18, 1994 , Accepted October 24, 1994
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1995, Vol. 38, 572-578. doi:10.1044/jshr.3803.572
History: Received April 18, 1994; Accepted October 24, 1994

It is important that researchers investigate alternative strategies for treating stuttering, as contemporary treatments are not entirely successful in reducing stuttering with all people. Furthermore, many who have been “successfully” treated suffer from high relapse rates in the long term. Acupuncture has been shown to be a promising treatment for several diverse disorders, so a pilot investigation into its effectiveness for stuttering was considered worthwhile. This study investigated traditional acupuncture-based treatments for two adult males who had stuttered since childhood. A single-case experimental ABAB multiple baseline design was employed to test for treatment effectiveness. Subjects were followed up for a further 12 weeks to evaluate maintenance (C phase) of possible improvements. No significant ABAB reversal effects were observed, and stuttering frequency through the treatment phases remained at baseline levels for the two subjects. Speech rate also remained at baseline levels throughout the treatment phases, as did naturalness of speech and anxiety levels. This research is important as claims that acupuncture may successfully reduce stuttering need to be tested, and the scope and usefulness of treatments like acupuncture for a wide variety of problems needs to be determined. However, the low subject numbers involved suggest caution in concluding acupuncture is not a successful intervention for stuttering. Perhaps alternative acupuncture points need to be evaluated and a wider variety of persons who stutter need to be involved in any future research.

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