Concomitant Disorders in School-Age Children Who Stutter Purpose: The purposes of this survey study were to (a) determine the number of children who stutter with verified concomitant phonological and language disorders, (b) determine the number of children who stutter with suspected concomitant phonological and language disorders, and (c) determine the type of treatment clinicians use with these ... Research Article
Research Article  |   April 01, 2001
Concomitant Disorders in School-Age Children Who Stutter
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Jennifer Arndt
    Aurora Public Schools, Aurora, NE
  • E. Charles Healey
    University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  • Contact author: E. Charles Healey, 253 Barkley Memorial Center, Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE 68583-0731.
    Contact author: E. Charles Healey, 253 Barkley Memorial Center, Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE 68583-0731.×
  • Corresponding author: e-mail: chealey1@unl.edu
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / School-Based Settings / Language Disorders / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Research Articles
Research Article   |   April 01, 2001
Concomitant Disorders in School-Age Children Who Stutter
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, April 2001, Vol. 32, 68-78. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2001/006)
History: Received January 30, 2000 , Accepted September 14, 2000
 
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, April 2001, Vol. 32, 68-78. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2001/006)
History: Received January 30, 2000; Accepted September 14, 2000
Web of Science® Times Cited: 40

Purpose: The purposes of this survey study were to (a) determine the number of children who stutter with verified concomitant phonological and language disorders, (b) determine the number of children who stutter with suspected concomitant phonological and language disorders, and (c) determine the type of treatment clinicians use with these children.

Method: A systematic sampling plan was used to obtain survey responses from 241 American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)-certified, school-based speech-language pathologists from 10 states that were considered to have similar state verification criteria for fluency, articulation/phonology, and language disorders. Respondents were asked to provide information concerning verified and suspected concomitant disorders in children who stutter. They also were asked to select one of four types of intervention approaches suggested by Bernstein Ratner (1995)  in treating concomitant disorders in stuttering (i.e., blended, cyclic, sequential, and concurrent).

Results: The speech-language pathologists reported on 467 children who stuttered. Of that total, 262 (56%) children had a fluency disorder only and 205 (44%) had a verified concomitant phonological and/or language disorder. A subgroup of children with verified fluency-only disorders were suspected of having a concomitant disorder. When treating a fluency and a concomitant phonological and/or language disorder, the majority of clinicians used a blended approach.

Clinical Implications: Using similar state verification guidelines, this survey showed that a large percentage of preschool through high school students possessed a verified fluency disorder and a phonological and/or language disorder. Thus, clinicians need to be aware of the strong possibility that school-age children who stutter might have a phonological disorder and/or a language disorder. Additionally, because the majority of respondents used a blended treatment approach when treating children with a fluency and a verified concomitant phonological and/or language disorder, it appears that many school-based clinicians believe it is best to address both problems simultaneously.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
This manuscript is based on a master’s thesis that was completed by the first author under the supervision of the second author. Portions of the manuscript were presented at the 1998 Annual Convention of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association in San Antonio, Texas. We would also like to thank Karen Hux, John Bernthal, and Michael Susca for their contributions to this project.
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