Prosody in Parkinson's Disease Purpose: Prosodic abnormalities are commonly recognized to be present in the speech of individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) and hypokinetic dysarthria. Emerging evidence also suggests that deficits in the receptive processing of prosody are present in individuals with PD. This paper reviews aspects of prosody in PD, including the perceptual ... Article
Article  |   October 01, 2009
Prosody in Parkinson's Disease
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Harrison N. Jones
    Division of Speech Pathology and Audiology, Department of Surgery, Duke UniversityDurham, NC
Article Information
Special Populations / Older Adults & Aging / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Articles
Article   |   October 01, 2009
Prosody in Parkinson's Disease
SIG 2 Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, October 2009, Vol. 19, 77-82. doi:10.1044/nnsld19.3.77
SIG 2 Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, October 2009, Vol. 19, 77-82. doi:10.1044/nnsld19.3.77
Abstract

Purpose: Prosodic abnormalities are commonly recognized to be present in the speech of individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) and hypokinetic dysarthria. Emerging evidence also suggests that deficits in the receptive processing of prosody are present in individuals with PD. This paper reviews aspects of prosody in PD, including the perceptual and acoustic features and their effect on communication; receptive deficits in prosodic processing; and the effects of medical, surgical, and behavioral treatments on prosody.

Methods: Published reports on the above listed aspects of prosody in PD are reviewed and reported.

Results and Conclusions: The perceptual and acoustic characteristics of prosodic impairments in PD are well defined. Perceptually, the principal prosodic features include monopitch, reduced stress, monoloudness, and rate abnormalities. The most common acoustic findings are decreased variability of fundamental frequency (F0) and intensity. A growing literature also suggests that the basal ganglia are critical in receptively processing prosodic information, which is impaired in PD. The role of medical and surgical treatment of PD on speech prosody remains unclear but, overall, appears limited. Behavioral treatments for prosodic disturbance appear promising, though further study is required.

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