Quantitative Assessment of Interutterance Stability: Application to Dysarthria PurposeFollowing recent attempts to quantify articulatory impairment in speech, the present study evaluates the usefulness of a novel measure of motor stability to characterize dysarthria.MethodThe study included 8 speakers with ataxic dysarthria (AD), 16 speakers with hypokinetic dysarthria (HD) as a result of Parkinson's disease, and 24 unimpaired control participants. ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2014
Quantitative Assessment of Interutterance Stability: Application to Dysarthria
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Fred Cummins
    University College Dublin, Ireland
  • Anja Lowit
    Strathclyde University, Glasgow, Scotland
  • Frits van Brenk
    Strathclyde University, Glasgow, Scotland
  • Disclosure:The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure:The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.×
  • Correspondence to Anja Lowit: a.lowit@strath.ac.uk
  • Editor: Jody Kreiman
    Editor: Jody Kreiman×
  • Associate Editor: Julie Liss
    Associate Editor: Julie Liss×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Dysarthria / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech
Research Article   |   February 01, 2014
Quantitative Assessment of Interutterance Stability: Application to Dysarthria
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2014, Vol. 57, 81-89. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2013/12-0374)
History: Received November 21, 2012 , Revised April 5, 2013 , Accepted June 13, 2013
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2014, Vol. 57, 81-89. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2013/12-0374)
History: Received November 21, 2012; Revised April 5, 2013; Accepted June 13, 2013
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1

PurposeFollowing recent attempts to quantify articulatory impairment in speech, the present study evaluates the usefulness of a novel measure of motor stability to characterize dysarthria.

MethodThe study included 8 speakers with ataxic dysarthria (AD), 16 speakers with hypokinetic dysarthria (HD) as a result of Parkinson's disease, and 24 unimpaired control participants. Each participant performed a series of sentence repetitions under habitual, fast, and slow speaking rate conditions. An algorithm to measure utterance-to-utterance spectro-temporal variation (UUV; Cummins, 2009) was used. Speech rate and intelligibility were also measured.

ResultsUUV scores were significantly correlated with perceptually based intelligibility scores. There were significant differences in UUV between control speakers and the AD but not the HD groups, presumably because of differences in intelligibility in the samples used and not because of differences in pathology. Habitual speaking rate did not correlate with UUV scores. All speaker groups had greater UUV levels in the slow conditions compared with habitual and fast speaking rates.

ConclusionsUUV results were consistent with those of other variability indices and thus appear to capture motor control issues in a similar way. The results suggest that the UUV could be developed into an easy-to-use clinical tool that could function as a valid and reliable assessment and outcome measure.

Acknowledgments
We would like to express our thanks to all our participants who dedicated their time to this project. We would also like to acknowledge the support of the Scottish Funding Council for the PhD studentship that provided the speech data for the current investigation.
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