Breath-Group Intelligibility in Dysarthria Characteristics and Underlying Correlates Research Article
Research Article  |   December 01, 2005
Breath-Group Intelligibility in Dysarthria
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Yana Yunusova
    Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin—Madison
  • Gary Weismer
    Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin—Madison
  • Ray D. Kent
    Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin—Madison
  • Nicole M. Rusche
    Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin—Madison
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Dysarthria / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   December 01, 2005
Breath-Group Intelligibility in Dysarthria
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2005, Vol. 48, 1294-1310. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2005/090)
History: Received January 14, 2005 , Revised April 20, 2005 , Accepted April 20, 2005
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2005, Vol. 48, 1294-1310. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2005/090)
History: Received January 14, 2005; Revised April 20, 2005; Accepted April 20, 2005
Web of Science® Times Cited: 30

Purpose: This study was designed to determine whether within-speaker fluctuations in speech intelligibility occurred among speakers with dysarthria who produced a reading passage, and, if they did, whether selected linguistic and acoustic variables predicted the variations in speech intelligibility.

Method: Participants with dysarthria included a total of 10 persons with Parkinson's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; a control group of 10 neurologically normal speakers was also studied. Each participant read a passage that was subsequently separated into consecutive breath groups for estimates of individual breath group intelligibility. Sixty listeners participated in 2 perceptual experiments, generating intelligibility scores across speakers and for each breath group produced by speakers with dysarthria.

Results: Individual participants with dysarthria had fluctuations in intelligibility across breath groups. Breath groups of participants with dysarthria had fewer average words and reduced interquartile ranges for the 2nd formant, the latter a global measure of articulatory mobility. Regression analyses with intelligibility measures as the criterion variable and linguistic and acoustic measures as predictor variables produced significant functions both within and across speakers, but the solutions were not the same.

Conclusions: Linguistic or acoustic variables that predict across-speaker variations in speech intelligibility may not function in the sameway when within-speaker variations in intelligibility are considered.

Acknowledgments
This work was supported by National Institutes of Health Grants R01 DC00319 and R01 DC003723. Portions of the work were presented at the 147th meeting of the Acoustical Society of America, New York, May 2004.
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