Friday, February 09, 2007

DAF Research Study

I found an article on PubMed about a recent study (November 2006) conducted on an auditory feedback (delayed audio) device, using 10 stutterering participants. Without rehashing the entire study (which you can read for yourself here)...the fast conclusion is that it proved successful in a short-term setting...and further study is needed to show long-term results.

As I've written about recently, I am interested in these devices and am doing a lot of reading and personal research. I spoke personally with Dr. Martin F. Schwartz about his device at the National center for Stuttering...and he promises 94% success rate long-term using not only his device...but his program. In fact, he opines that one cannot achieve success without a (his) program. The device alone will help you...but you cannot maintain the disclipline of applying the accompanying and necessary exercises...on your own. Both the device and the accompanying program are necessary for success. He personally told me that I could have "the monkey off my back" in about 6-9 months.

Of course, Dr. Schwartz has a vested interest in saying this...after all, he earns income when you are enrolled in his program; however, I am inclined to at least give him partial benefit of the doubt, given that he's a doctor and not just some guy peddling "snake oil". I doubt I will be trying his program anytime soon, however, as the cost of it is beyond my budget ($2400)...but I am keeping my eye on his work and on the work of other programs that offer this device. (To be fair, he did indicate that most PPOs and HMOs will shoulder most of the cost of the program.)

I would be interested in just trying a device for myself without a program, just to see what it can do for me. Even if the positive results are only marginal. As I stated before, I got a brief taste of the effect when I called my son at his school...and there was a spontaneous phenomenon of an echo in my phone, allowing me to hear myself back with a half-second delay. When the echo was present, I was nearly completely fluent, free from stuttering.

I've heard some indicate that the positve effects of such devices eventually wears off because of the phenomenon of immunity. Just as you eventually become accustomed to hearing background noise in some settings, like noisy factories...or the background music in stores...eventually the effects of the delayed feedback wear off as you become accustomed to hearing it. Of course, this claims are all anecdotal and I've never personally spoken to anyone who has tried the devices.

I do suggest to readers to at least read Dr. Schwartz information about stuttering and his findings. They are very interesting reading, if nothing else. I suggest that you start here.

1 comment:

Randy said...

Any updates about this "method"? If so please write me.