Munson Health
 
Dysarthria

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by Cresse M
 

Definition

Mouth and Throat
Mouth Throat
Dysarthria may arise from problems with the muscles in the mouth, throat, and respiratory system, as well as other causes.
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Causes

This condition can be caused by not being able to control and coordinate the muscles that you use to talk. This can result from:
 

Diagnosis

You will be asked about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done, paying close attention to your:
  • Ability to move your lips, tongue, and face
  • Production of air flow for speech
Images may be taken of your brain. This can be done with:
  • MRI scan
  • CT scan
  • PET scan
  • Single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) scan
  • Swallowing study, which may include x-rays and drinking a special liquid
The electrical function of your nerves or muscles may be tested. This can be done with:
  • Nerve conduction study
  • Electromyogram
 

Prevention

To help reduce your chance of getting dysarthria, take the following steps:
  • Reduce your risk of stroke:
    • Exercise regularly.
    • Eat more fruits and vegetables. Limit dietary salt and fat.
    • If you smoke, talk to your doctor about ways to quit.
    • Maintain a healthy weight.
    • Check your blood pressure often.
    • Take a low dose of aspirin if your doctor recommends it.
    • Keep chronic conditions under control.
    • Call for medical help right away if you have symptoms of a stroke, even if symptoms stop.
  • If you have an alcohol or drug problem, get help.
  • Ask your doctor if medications you are taking could lead to dysarthria.
 

RESOURCES

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
http://www.asha.org

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
http://www.ninds.nih.gov

 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Heart and Stroke Foundation
http://www.heartandstroke.com

Speech-Language and Audiology Canada
http://www.caslpa.ca

 

References


Dysarthria. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association website. Available at: http://www.asha.org/public/speech/disorders/dysarthria.htm. Accessed February 13, 2014.


McGhee H, Cornwell P, et al. Treating dysarthria following traumatic brain injury: Investigating the benefits of commencing treatment during post-traumatic amnesia in two participants. Brain Injury. 2006;20:1307-1319.


Stroke prevention. National Stroke Association website. Available at: http://www.stroke.org/site/PageServer?pagename=PREVENT. Accessed February 13, 2014.

 

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