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Year: 2015  Vol. 19   Num. 2  - Apr/Junee
DOI: 10.1055/s-0034-1397332
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Comparing Voice Self-Assessment with Auditory Perceptual Analysis in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis
Author(s):
Vladimir Bauer, Zorica Aleric, Ervin Jancic
Key words:
multiple sclerosis - quality of life - voice quality - voice disorders
Abstract:

Introduction: Disordered voice quality could be a symptom of multiple sclerosis (MS). The impact of MS on voice-related quality of life is still controversial.

Objectives: The aim of this study was to compare the results of voice self-assessment with the results of expert perceptual assessment in patients with MS.

Methods: The research included 38 patients with relapse-remitting MS (23 women and 15 men; ages 21 to 83, mean = 44). All participants filled out a Voice Handicap Index (VHI), and their voice sample was analyzed by speech and language professionals using the Grade Roughness Breathiness Asthenia Strain scale (GRBAS).

Results: The patients with MS had significantly higher VHI than control group participants (mean value 16.68  16.2 compared with 5.29  5.5, p = 0.0001). The study established a notable level of dysphonia in 55%, roughness and breathiness in 66%, asthenia in 34%, and strain in 55% of the vocal samples. A significant correlation was established between VHI and GRBAS scores (r = 0.3693, p = 0.0225), and VHI and asthenia and strain components (r = 0.4037 and 0.3775, p = 0.012 and 0.0195, respectively). The female group showed positive and significant correlation between claims for self-assessing one's voice (pVHI) and overall GRBAS scores, and between pVHI and grade, roughness, asthenia, and strain components. No significant correlation was found for male patients (p > 0.05).

Conclusion: A significant number of patients with MS experienced voice problems. The VHI is a good and effective tool to assess patient self-perception of voice quality, but it may not reflect the severity of dysphonia as perceived by voice and speech professionals.

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