Authors: Cream A, O'Brian S, Onslow M, Packman A, Menzies R
Title: Self-modelling as a relapse intervention following speech-restructuring treatment for stuttering
Source: International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders 2009 44(5): 587-599
Year: 2009
Research Design: Case Series

BACKGROUND: Speech restructuring is an efficacious method for the alleviation of stuttered speech. However, post-treatment relapse is common. AIMS: To investigate whether the use of video self-modelling using restructured stutter-free speech reduces stuttering in adults who had learnt a speech-restructuring technique and subsequently relapsed. METHODS and PROCEDURES: Participants were twelve adults who had previously had speech-restructuring treatment for stuttering and relapsed. They were video recorded for 1 hour within the clinic, practising their speech-restructuring technique. The videos were then edited to remove all observable stuttering. Participants then viewed the resulting video of themselves using restructured stutter-free speech each day for 1 month and were instructed to speak as they did on the video. Beyond-clinic speech samples and self-report severity data were collected before and after the intervention. OUTCOMES and RESULTS: Very large effect sizes were found. The mean per cent syllables stuttered was 7.7 pre-intervention and 2.3 post-intervention. For all but one participant there was a reduction in stuttering from pre-intervention to post-intervention. These results were verified with self-report data. Speech naturalness was not compromised by the video self-modelling procedure. CONCLUSION and IMPLICATIONS: Video self-modelling as a relapse management tool does not involve excessive time expenditure by the clinician or the client. The study indicates video self-modelling is potentially useful for managing relapse after speech-restructuring treatment for stuttering, and in some cases may be a stand-alone procedure to manage relapse. Phase II and III trials are warranted to determine the size and duration of the effect. It is suggested video self-modelling could also be included in a relapse management plan.

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