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Pró-Fono Revista de Atualização Científica

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MARTINS, Vanessa de Oliveira  and  ANDRADE, Claudia Regina Furquim de. Speech fluency developmental profile in brazilian Portuguese speakers. Pró-Fono R. Atual. Cient. [online]. 2008, vol.20, n.1, pp.7-12. ISSN 0104-5687.

BACKGROUND: speech fluency varies from one individual to the next, fluent or stutterer, depending on several factors. Studies that investigate the influence of age on fluency patterns have been identified; however these differences were investigated in isolated age groups. Studies about life span fluency variations were not found. AIM: to verify the speech fluency developmental profile. METHOD: speech samples of 594 fluent participants of both genders, with ages between 2:0 and 99:11 years, speakers of the Brazilian Portuguese language, were analyzed. Participants were grouped as follows: pre-scholars, scholars, early adolescence, late adolescence, adults and elderlies. Speech samples were analyzed according to the Speech Fluency Profile variables and were compared regarding: typology of speech disruptions (typical and less typical), speech rate (words and syllables per minute) and frequency of speech disruptions (percentage of speech discontinuity). RESULTS: although isolated variations were identified, overall there was no significant difference between the age groups for the speech disruption indexes (typical and less typical speech disruptions and percentage of speech discontinuity). Significant differences were observed between the groups when considering speech rate. CONCLUSION: the development of the neurolinguistic system for speech fluency, in terms of speech disruptions, seems to stabilize itself during the first years of life, presenting no alterations during the life span. Indexes of speech rate present variations in the age groups, indicating patterns of acquisition, development, stabilization and degeneration.

Keywords : Speech; Speech Production Measurements; Growth and Development; Aging.

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