Developmental Stuttering in Children Who Are Hard of Hearing Purpose A number of studies with large sample sizes have reported lower prevalence of stuttering in children with significant hearing loss compared to children without hearing loss. This study used a parent questionnaire to investigate the characteristics of stuttering (e.g., incidence, prevalence, and age of onset) in children who are ... Research Article
Research Article  |   October 05, 2017
Developmental Stuttering in Children Who Are Hard of Hearing
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Richard M. Arenas
    Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque
  • Elizabeth A. Walker
    Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, University of Iowa
  • Jacob J. Oleson
    Department of Biostatistics, University of Iowa
  • 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 Richard Arenas: rickarenas@unm.edu
  • Editor-in-Chief: Shelley Gray
    Editor-in-Chief: Shelley Gray×
  • Editor: Ignatius Nip
    Editor: Ignatius Nip×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / Hearing & Speech Perception / Hearing Disorders / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 05, 2017
Developmental Stuttering in Children Who Are Hard of Hearing
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, October 2017, Vol. 48, 234-248. doi:10.1044/2017_LSHSS-17-0028
History: Received March 6, 2017 , Revised May 24, 2017 , Accepted June 23, 2017
 
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, October 2017, Vol. 48, 234-248. doi:10.1044/2017_LSHSS-17-0028
History: Received March 6, 2017; Revised May 24, 2017; Accepted June 23, 2017

Purpose A number of studies with large sample sizes have reported lower prevalence of stuttering in children with significant hearing loss compared to children without hearing loss. This study used a parent questionnaire to investigate the characteristics of stuttering (e.g., incidence, prevalence, and age of onset) in children who are hard of hearing (CHH).

Method Three hundred three parents of CHH who participated in the Outcomes of Children With Hearing Loss study (Moeller & Tomblin, 2015) were sent questionnaires asking about their child's history of stuttering.

Results One hundred ninety-four parents of CHH responded to the survey. Thirty-three CHH were reported to have stuttered at one point in time (an incidence of 17.01%), and 10 children were still stuttering at the time of survey submission (a prevalence of 5.15%). Compared to estimates in the general population, this sample displayed a significantly higher incidence and prevalence. The age of onset, recovery rate, and other characteristics were similar to hearing children.

Conclusions Based on this sample, mild to moderately severe hearing loss does not appear to be a protective factor for stuttering in the preschool years. In fact, the incidence and prevalence of stuttering may be higher in this population compared to the general population. Despite the significant speech and language needs that children with mild to moderately severe hearing loss may have, speech-language pathologists should appropriately prioritize stuttering treatment as they would in the hearing population.

Supplemental Material https://doi.org/10.23641/asha.5397154

Acknowledgments
This work was supported by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders R01DC009560 (PIs: Bruce Tomblin, Mary Pat Moeller). The content of this project is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders or the National Institutes of Health. Special thanks go to the families and children who participated in the research.
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