Temperament and Early Stuttering Development: Cross-Sectional Findings From a Community Cohort Purpose The purpose of this study was to ascertain if there is an association between stuttering severity and behaviors and the expression of temperament characteristics, including precursors of anxiety. Method We studied temperament characteristics of a prospectively recruited community cohort of children who stutter (N = 173) at ... Research Article
Research Article  |   April 14, 2017
Temperament and Early Stuttering Development: Cross-Sectional Findings From a Community Cohort
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Elaina Kefalianos
    Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia
    Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Parkville, Victoria, Australia
    Department of Paediatrics, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia
  • Mark Onslow
    Australian Stuttering Research Centre, University of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  • Obioha C. Ukoumunne
    National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC) South West Peninsula (PenCLAHRC), University of Exeter Medical School, University of Exeter, Devon, United Kingdom
  • Susan Block
    School of Allied Health, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  • Sheena Reilly
    Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Parkville, Victoria, Australia
    Department of Paediatrics, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia
    Menzies Health Institute Queensland, Griffith University, Nathan, Queensland, Australia
  • 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. ×
  • Corresponding author Elaina Kefalianos: Tel.: +61 3 8344 4859; ekefalianos@unimelb.edu.au
  • Editor: Julie Liss
    Editor: Julie Liss×
  • Associate Editor: Hans-Georg Bosshardt
    Associate Editor: Hans-Georg Bosshardt×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   April 14, 2017
Temperament and Early Stuttering Development: Cross-Sectional Findings From a Community Cohort
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 2017, Vol. 60, 772-784. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-S-15-0196
History: Received June 1, 2015 , Revised December 15, 2015 , Accepted August 7, 2016
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 2017, Vol. 60, 772-784. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-S-15-0196
History: Received June 1, 2015; Revised December 15, 2015; Accepted August 7, 2016

Purpose The purpose of this study was to ascertain if there is an association between stuttering severity and behaviors and the expression of temperament characteristics, including precursors of anxiety.

Method We studied temperament characteristics of a prospectively recruited community cohort of children who stutter (N = 173) at ages 3, 4, and 6 years using the Short Temperament Scale STS (Prior, Sanson, Smart & Oberklaid, 2000) .

Results Six of 131 statistical tests of association between stuttering severity and behaviors and temperament traits were statistically significant at the 5% level, which was no more than expected by chance alone.

Conclusions On the basis of parent responses to the STS, preschoolers who exhibited different levels of stuttering severity and behaviors did not generally express temperament traits differently from one another. Stuttering severity and stuttering behaviors were not associated with the precursors of anxiety. Overall, taking multiple tests into consideration, results show little evidence of association between stuttering severity and temperament up to 4 years of age or between stuttering behaviors and temperament up to 6 years of age.

Acknowledgments
The Early Language in Victoria Study (ELVS) was funded by Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Grants 237106, 436958, and 436958, held by Sheena Reilly. An additional NHMRC program grant, held by M. Onslow, and grants from the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute held by Sheena Reilly and the Faculty of Health Sciences at La Trobe University held by other ELVS chief investigators also supplemented funding for this project. O. C. Ukoumunne is supported by the National Institute for Health Research Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care for the South West Peninsula at the Royal Devon and Exeter National Health Service Foundation Trust. The views expressed in this publication are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the National Health Service, the National Institute for Health Research, or the Department of Health in England. Ethical approval was obtained from the Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne (23018) and La Trobe University Human Ethics Committee (03-32). This research was supported by the Victorian Government's Operational Infrastructure Support Program. We would also like to acknowledge the team of ELVS investigators, particularly, Ann Packman, Patricia Eadie, and Melissa Wake, and all of the children and parents who participated in ELVS.
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