Using electropalatography (EPG) to diagnose and treat articulation disorders associated with mild cerebral palsy: a case study.
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Gibbon, F. & Wood, S. (2003) Using electropalatography (EPG) to diagnose and treat articulation disorders associated with mild cerebral palsy: a case study., Clinical Linguistics & Phonetics, vol. 17, , pp. 365-374,
Some children with mild cerebral palsy have articulation disorders that are resistant to conventional speech therapy techniques. This preliminary study investigated the use of electropalatography (EPG) to diagnose and treat a longstanding articulation disorder that had not responded to conventional speech therapy techniques in an 8-year-old boy (D) with a congenital left hemiplegia. The targets for EPG therapy were speech errors affecting velar targets /k, g, n/, which were consistently fronted to alveolar placement [t, d, n]. After 15 sessions of EPG therapy over a 4-month period, D's ability to produce velars improved significantly. The EPG data revealed two features of diagnostic importance. The first was an unusually asymmetrical pattern of tongue-palate contact and the second was unusually long stop closure durations. These features are interpreted as a subtle form of impaired speech motor control that could be related to a mild residual neurological deficit. The results suggest that EPG is of potential benefit for diagnosing and treating articulation disorders in individuals with mild cerebral palsy.