Authors: McMicken BL, Ostergren JA, Vento-Wilson M
Title: Therapeutic intervention in a case of ataxic dysarthria associated with a history of amateur boxing
Source: Communication Disorders Quarterly 2011 33(1): 55-64
Year: 2011
Research Design: Single Case Design

The goals of this study were to (a) describe the presenting features of ataxic dysarthria present in a participant with a long history of amateur boxing, (b) describe a novel application of behavioral principles in the treatment of this participant, and (c) discuss implications in the treatment of ataxic dysarthria secondary to boxing. The participant was a 36-year-old male with ataxic dysarthria associated with a 15-year history of amateur boxing. Perceptual intelligibility, perceptual severity, communication attitudes, and communication effectiveness were evaluated. As a result of treatment, the participant eliminated the ataxic characteristics of his speech within structured tasks. Speech patterns were controlled through loudness practice and a gradual increase in utterance length and complexity. This study offers speech-language pathologists an introduction to the topic of amateur boxing and associated neurologic consequences as well as a description of the use of behavioral principles in the treatment of ataxic dysarthria.

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