Binding the Abdomen Can Improve Speech in Men With Phrenic Nerve Pacers Two men with high cervical spinal cord injuries and phrenic nerve pacers were studied with and without an elastic binder around the abdomen. Speech improved with the binder, as determined by listener preference ratings provided by 10 judges and by the subjects themselves. Improvement was substantial in one subject and ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2002
Binding the Abdomen Can Improve Speech in Men With Phrenic Nerve Pacers
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Jeannette D. Hoit, PhD
    National Center for Neurogenic Communications Disorders Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences University of Arizona, Tucson
  • Robert B. Banzett
    Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School Physiology Program, Harvard School of Public Health VA Boston Health Care System, Boston, MA
  • Robert Brown
    VA Boston Health Care System Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA
  • Contact author: Jeannette D. Hoit, PhD, Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, P.O. Box 210071, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721. E-mail: hoit@email.arizona.edu
  • 1 Current affiliation: Pulmonary and Critical Care Division, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA.
    Current affiliation: Pulmonary and Critical Care Division, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA.×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Voice Disorders / Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2002
Binding the Abdomen Can Improve Speech in Men With Phrenic Nerve Pacers
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, February 2002, Vol. 11, 71-76. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2002/008)
History: Received December 19, 2000 , Accepted June 14, 2001
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, February 2002, Vol. 11, 71-76. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2002/008)
History: Received December 19, 2000; Accepted June 14, 2001
Web of Science® Times Cited: 8

Two men with high cervical spinal cord injuries and phrenic nerve pacers were studied with and without an elastic binder around the abdomen. Speech improved with the binder, as determined by listener preference ratings provided by 10 judges and by the subjects themselves. Improvement was substantial in one subject and slight in the other. The subject with the greater improvement exhibited higher peak tracheal pressure, higher sound pressure level, and longer utterance duration with the binder in place. Speech improvement was attributed primarily to augmentation of tidal volume associated with the use of the binder. An abdominal binder can be an effective intervention to improve speech in certain individuals with spinal cord injuries and phrenic nerve pacers. Speech may be further improved by using behavioral strategies, such as neck muscle activation, glossopharyngeal breathing, and pharyngeal or buccal speech production.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported, in part, by Research Grant DC-03425 and National Mulitpurpose Research and Training Center Grant DC-01409 from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. The authors wish to thank the subjects and Marie Dugan, DiAnne Gagliardo, Wolfgang Golser, Thomas Hixon, and Heather Lohmeier for their valuable assistance.
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