Cross-Cultural Variation in Objective Measures of Voice: A Systematic Review Public Deposited

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  • February 22, 2019
  • Palmer, Jesse
    • Affiliation: School of Medicine, Department of Allied Health Sciences, Division of Speech and Hearing Sciences
  • For years, one of the key components of a voice examination has been taking acoustic measurements of the patient's voice. The reasoning behind this has been that these values could be compared to the normative data in order to determine how the patient's voice is differing from what is expected of a vocally healthy individual. This in turn helps inform the speech pathologist as to what is happening with the patient's voice either organically or functionally, helps them decide which techniques may be utilized in therapy, and gives them information to relay back to the referring doctor. Although this normative acoustic data often plays such a vital role in voice evaluations, it is often accepted without considering the populations it was drawn from. America continues to become more ethnically and culturally diverse, so this data needs to be representative of our shifting demographics. Patients could be wrongly diagnosed and improperly treated for a voice disorder because the acoustic characteristics of their voice didn't match those of a population that differs significantly from their own. According to ASHA's Preferred Practice Patterns (2004), comprehensive assessments should be "sensitive to persons from all culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds." Therefore, it is our ethical duty as speech language pathologists to utilize data that will represent people from all cultures and ethnicities. The goal of this systematic review was to investigate the normative acoustic voice data of people from different racial and cultural backgrounds and how it compared to the generally accepted norms. Through this, it was hoped that either the existing norms would be validated or enough evidence would be found to encourage further study into the topic.
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  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Department of Allied Health Sciences. Division of Speech and Hearing Sciences. Student Research Day (8th: 2016: Chapel Hill, NC)

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