Executive Functions Impact the Relation Between Respiratory Sinus Arrhythmia and Frequency of Stuttering in Young Children Who Do and Do Not Stutter Purpose This study sought to determine whether respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) and executive functions are associated with stuttered speech disfluencies of young children who do (CWS) and do not stutter (CWNS). Method Thirty-six young CWS and 36 CWNS were exposed to neutral, negative, and positive emotion-inducing video clips, ... Research Article
Research Article  |   August 16, 2017
Executive Functions Impact the Relation Between Respiratory Sinus Arrhythmia and Frequency of Stuttering in Young Children Who Do and Do Not Stutter
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Robin M. Jones
    Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN
  • Tedra A. Walden
    Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
  • Edward G. Conture
    Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN
  • Aysu Erdemir
    Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
  • Warren E. Lambert
    Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
  • Stephen W. Porges
    Indiana University Bloomington
  • 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 Robin M. Jones: robin.m.jones@vanderbilt.edu
  • Editor: Julie Liss
    Editor: Julie Liss×
  • Associate Editor: Hans-Georg Bosshardt
    Associate Editor: Hans-Georg Bosshardt×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / Regulatory, Legislative & Advocacy / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   August 16, 2017
Executive Functions Impact the Relation Between Respiratory Sinus Arrhythmia and Frequency of Stuttering in Young Children Who Do and Do Not Stutter
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2017, Vol. 60, 2133-2150. doi:10.1044/2017_JSLHR-S-16-0113
History: Received March 21, 2016 , Revised August 3, 2016 , Accepted February 8, 2017
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2017, Vol. 60, 2133-2150. doi:10.1044/2017_JSLHR-S-16-0113
History: Received March 21, 2016; Revised August 3, 2016; Accepted February 8, 2017

Purpose This study sought to determine whether respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) and executive functions are associated with stuttered speech disfluencies of young children who do (CWS) and do not stutter (CWNS).

Method Thirty-six young CWS and 36 CWNS were exposed to neutral, negative, and positive emotion-inducing video clips, followed by their participation in speaking tasks. During the neutral video, we measured baseline RSA, a physiological index of emotion regulation, and during video viewing and speaking, we measured RSA change from baseline, a physiological index of regulatory responses during challenge. Participants' caregivers completed the Children's Behavior Questionnaire from which a composite score of the inhibitory control and attentional focusing subscales served to index executive functioning.

Results For both CWS and CWNS, greater decrease of RSA during both video viewing and speaking was associated with more stuttering. During speaking, CWS with lower executive functioning exhibited a negative association between RSA change and stuttering; conversely, CWNS with higher executive functioning exhibited a negative association between RSA change and stuttering.

Conclusion Findings suggest that decreased RSA during video viewing and speaking is associated with increased stuttering and young CWS differ from CWNS in terms of how their executive functions moderate the relation between RSA change and stuttered disfluencies.

Acknowledgments
This study would not have been possible without financial support from the following: National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) to Vanderbilt University (5R01DC000523-19, 2R56DC000523-20A1), the National Center for Research Resources, and a CTSA grant (1 UL1 RR024975-01) to Vanderbilt University that is now at the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (UL1 TR000445-06). The research reported herein does not reflect the views of the NIH, NIDCD, or Vanderbilt University. The authors thank Kristopher J. Preacher for his advice and comments on data analysis and visual display of statistical analyses. The authors would like to extend their sincere appreciation for reviews of early versions of this article by Dr. Julie Liss, Editor, Dr. Hans-Georg Bosshardt, Associate Editor, and two anonymous reviewers. The authors also extend sincere appreciation to the young children and their caregivers who participated in this study, individuals without whose cooperation this project would not have been possible to conduct.
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