Having recently completed the Lee Silverman Voice Treatment Program online recertification course, I thought I would share some of the new research as well as some helpful information for people considering LSVT as a treatment program to help improve Parkinson’s Voice. Here are a few key topics:
LSVT-X is an alternate way of delivering or receiving the Lee Silverman Voice Treatment program. Only the dosage changes in LSVT-X, all other treatment factors remain the same. Instead of the usual 4 sessions a week for 4 weeks, 2 treatment sessions are delivered per week over 8 weeks. The same number of face-to-face sessions are conducted and sessions are still 1 hour in length. Homework is done daily over the 8 weeks. LSVT-X is a good option for patients who live in rural areas or have other weekly commitments and therefore have difficulty attending 4 days a week.
Focusing on a Single Treatment Target
As a therapist or a patient, it can be tempting to want to have multiple targets in therapy and focusing on a single target may seem too easy. However, one of the key principles to ensure treatment efficacy in LSVT is to focus on a single treatment target. LSVT research maintains that this single focus limits cognitive load, addresses hypokinesia, scales up amplitude across the whole speech mechanism and is associated with improvements in articulation, intonation as well as voice quality.
LSVT and Dysphagia
Improvements in swallow function has also been documented post LSVT loud treatment due to the fact that swallowing and speech production share common control elements and anatomic structures. Therefore treatment may have distributed effects on these shared elements and structures. Early studies have shown improvements in anterior/posterior tongue movement, tongue strength, and anterior/lateral lingual stabilization of the food/fluid bolus.
New Randomised Control Trial
A third randomised control trial which compared LSVT Lou to another treatment program focusing on articulation (LSVT Artic) was completed. The trial showed a greater degree of improvement in patients after LSVT Loud compared to LSVT artic. Moreover, LSVT loud was the only treatment of the two to provide lasting improvement 6 months follow up post treatment.
Contact us for results focused speech therapy
This article was written by our Speech Pathologist Ashleigh Fattah who is a Speech Pathology Australia member. If you have speech pathology related questions, make an appointment. We‘ll provide you with simple and effective therapy targeted to your concerns.
Contact us today.