Research Glimpse, Treatment Implications: Attention & Stuttering

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Written by Matthew O’Malley

Article Examined:  Attention Training in Rehabilitation of Children with Developmental Stuttering

Link:  Attention Training in Rehabilitation of Children with Developmental Stuttering

Bibliographical Information:  Nejati, V., H. R. Pouretemad, and H. Bahrami. “Attention Training in Rehabilitation of Children with Developmental Stuttering.” NeuroRehabilitation32.2 (2013): 297-303.

Note:  The content of this post is my interpretation of a research article.  I read and analyze research articles and aim to extract and simplify the most important findings.  In simplifying the information, much of the context of the research is lost.  To gain the full context of the research and to come to one’s own conclusions about the findings, one should always read the original article in its entirety which I will provide a link for, as well as bibliographical information.

Interpretation of article:

  • Study investigated the effect attention training has on stuttering.
  • It consisted of 30 children who stutter.  15 children were in the control group (these children were not given attention training intervention).  The other 15 children were the “case” group (these children were given attention training intervention).
  • Attention training consisted of about ten 1 hour sessions of NEJATI (Neurocognitive Joyful Attentive Training Intervention)
    • NEJATI consisted of different tasks.  One example was grouping faces based on certain criteria.  Part of the idea behind this task was you had to inhibit certain stimuli and focus on the stimuli required for the task.
  • Attention training showed to improve stuttering (decreased the amount of stuttering).  The children given the attention training intervention showed improvement in their stuttering (stuttered less).  The control group (did not receive attention training intervention) remained the same in stuttering severity.
  • Children were around the age of 12

Quotes from the article:

  • “Attention is required for making coordination between all components of fluent speaking and allocation of attention resources to them.” (Nejati, Pouretemad, Bahrami, 2013)
  • “Recently several studies state that there are some attentional difficulties in stuttering (Anderson, Pellowski, Conture, & Kelly, 2003; Guitar, 2006; Karrass et al., 2006)” (Nejati, Pouretemad, Bahrami, 2013)
  • “Some attention-related problem behaviors in children with stuttering (CWS) are high distractibility and difficulties in shifting attention from one task to another one (Embrechts, Ebben, Franke, & van de Poel, 2000; Karrass et al., 2006; Monfrais-Pfauwadel & Lacombe, 2002; Riley & Riley, 2000; Schwenk, Conture,& Walden, 2007).” (Nejati, Pouretemad, Bahrami, 2013)
  • “Similarly dividing attention as an ability of attention resource allocation to several tasks is problematic for children with stutter so that concurrent tasks with speech increase severity of stuttering for them (Bosshardt, 1999).” (Nejati, Pouretemad, Bahrami, 2013)
  • “Present study shows that attention training expanded attentional resource span and reduced stuttering especially in dual task conditions.” (Nejati, Pouretemad, Bahrami, 2013)

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