Combo Speech, Singing Therapy May Have Greater Effect in Parkinson Disease

Combination therapy program provided via telerehabilitation may have greater effect than speech therapy, singing intervention alone
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Medically Reviewed By:
Meeta Shah, M.D.

FRIDAY, June 9, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- Combining speech therapy with a singing intervention delivered via telerehabilitation seems to have a greater effect for patients with Parkinson disease (PD) with voice deficits, according to a study published online June 7 in the International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders.

Zeinab Mohseni, from Iran University of Medical Science in Tehran, and colleagues examined the effects of a new telerehabilitation program, combining conventional speech therapy and a singing intervention, on voice deficits in a trial involving 33 patients with PD. Patients were randomly assigned to the combination therapy, conventional speech therapy, or singing intervention groups; each patient participated in 12 sessions over four weeks. Simultaneous speech and singing interventions were provided in the combination therapy group.

The researchers found that after treatment, all three groups showed a significant main effect of time on all outcomes in a repeated measures analysis of variance. A significant group effect was seen for voice intensity, voice handicap index (VHI), maximum frequency range, and shimmer. A significant outperformance was seen in the VHI and shimmer for the combination therapy group versus the speech therapy and singing intervention groups. Compared with the singing intervention group, the combination therapy group had a larger effect on voice intensity, shimmer, and maximum frequency range.

"The advantages of this intervention are that it is suitable for many stages of voice problems in PD, does not require previous singing training, is enjoyable, and maximizes the available therapeutic resources for people with PD," the authors write.

Abstract/Full Text

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