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Clin Linguist Phon. 2009 Oct;23(10):751-61. doi: 10.3109/02699200903144770.

Phonological development in children with obstructive sleep-disordered breathing.

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Division of Speech and Language Pathology, Linköping University, Sweden.


Adeno-tonsillar hypertrophy with obstructive sleep disordered breathing (OSDB) is known to affect oral-motor function, behaviour, and academic performance. Adeno-tonsillectomy is the most frequently performed operation in children, with total tonsillectomy (TE) being more common than partial resection, 'tonsillotomy' (TT). In the present study 67 children, aged 50-65 months, with OSBD were randomized to TE or TT. The children's phonology was assessed pre-operatively and 6 months post-operatively. Two groups of children served as controls. Phonology was affected in 62.7% of OSBD children before surgery, compared to 34% in the control group (p < .001). Also, OSBD children had more severe phonological deficits than the controls (p < .001). Phonology improved 6 months equally after both surgeries. Despite improvement post-operatively, the gap to the controls increased. Other functional aspects, such as oral motor function, were normalized regardless of surgical method--TE or TT. The impact of OSBD should be considered as one contributing factor in phonological impairment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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