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Working With Voice Disorders

Stephanie Martin and Ruth Lockhart
Winslow (Speechmark), 2000. ISBN 0863882439


Review by Ruth Epstein, PhD, MRCSLT

Stephanie Martin and Ruth Lockhart have addressed in this manual the practical aspects of managing voice disorders by providing a range of treatment strategies, starting with case history taking, leading to intervention and follow-up. The content reflects their considerable clinical experience in the challenging field of voice.

The layout of the manual is clear; each chapter addresses different topics, allowing the reader to select individual areas of interest. Chapter 1 reviews the anatomy, physiology and neuroanatomy of voice production, an essential basis for the understanding of voice production. Chapter 2 details non-organic voice disorders including a section on professional voice users. Chapter 3 discusses management of organic disorders, ranging from vocal nodules to vocal fold atrophy. Chapter 4 is devoted to history taking, encompassing medical, emotional and lifestyle issues. Perceptual and instrumental assessment systems that can be used for initial evaluation, as well as for monitoring progress and outcome, are reviewed in chapter 5. Chapter 6 covers treatment strategies, addressing posture, relaxation, breathing, phonation and resonance. The clinician is encouraged to evaluate patients holistically, acknowledging the role of various factors such as emotional stress in the management of voice disorders. Each group of exercises is preceded by practical considerations for clinicians, and advice to patients, which would be of value, which would be of particular value to the less experienced clinician.

Chapter 7 addresses important and topical issues such as resources, quality standards and care models that would be helpful to clinicians that are considering setting up a new service or evaluating an existing one. The appendices are comprehensive and extremely practical.

In summary, Working With Voice Disorders is a highly recommended, user-friendly resource book, which would be of great value to both students and practising voice clinicians.



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