Widening access to electropalatography for children with persistent sound system disorders.
Hardcastle, William J.
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Gibbon, F., Stewart, F. & Hardcastle, W. (1999) Widening access to electropalatography for children with persistent sound system disorders., American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, vol. 8, , pp. 319-334,
Previous studies have demonstrated the value of using electropalatography (EPG) to assess, diagnose, and treat persistent sound system disorders in children. However, the application of EPG research has been limited in clinical contexts because most speech-language pathologists do not have access to the technique. This article provides an overview of recent EPG research on persistent sound system disorders and describes a network that has been established to widen access to EPG. The use of EPG via the network is illustrated in the case description of an 8-year-old boy, Robbie, who presented with a persisting speech disorder. The network was used because the clinician treating Robbie did not have an EPG. The main perceptual feature of Robbie's speech before EPG treatment was the deviant phonological process of backing /t/ and /d/ targets to velar place of articulation. EPG was used to assess articulatory patterns before treatment, to provide visual feedback as part of a treatment program, and to record changes in tongue-palate contact patterns as treatment progressed. Robbie achieved normal /t/ and /d/ articulatory patterns after treatment and was subsequently discharged. Factors that could have contributed to the successful outcome in this case are discussed, and areas requiring further research are identified.