J Korean Child Neurol Soc.  2011 Apr;19(1):8-17.

Clinical Review of Children Diagnosed as Specific Language Impairment

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Dae-Dong Hospital, Busan, Korea. pedson40@yahoo.co.kr
  • 2Department of Speech-Language Therapy, Dae-Dong Hospital, Busan, Korea.

Abstract

PURPOSE
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical characteristics of children who had been diagnosed as specific language impairment as outpatients.
METHODS
One hundred twenty-five speech- or language-delayed patients were enrolled in Dae-Dong Hospital from July 2007 to June 2008. Fifty-one of 125 children were diagnosed as specific language impairment in whom clinical factors such as duration of therapy and progress after therapy were evaluated. Data were obtained from telephone or direct personal interviews.
RESULTS
Among 51 children diagnosed as specific language impairment, 39 (76.5%) had mixed receptive-expressive-type language disorder and 12 (23.5%) had expressive-type language disorder. Thirty children in total were studied as ten children were unavailable for follow-up and eleven dropped out during treatment. The final 30 children consisting of 23 with mixed receptive-expressive type language disorder and seven children with expressive-type language disorder were treated after diagnosis. Total average treatment duration of children with mixed receptive-expressive-type and expressive-type language disorder were 18.1 months and 8.6 months, respectively, a statistically significant difference (P = 0.014). Thirteen (57%) of 23 children with mixed receptive-expressive-type language disorder and all (100%) seven children with expressive-type language disorder completed speech therapy with an average treatment duration of 12.2 and 8.6 months, respectively; however, this difference was not statistically significant(P = 0.287).
CONCLUSION
Classifying patients with specific language impairments into mixed receptive-expressive-type and expressive-type language disorder in an outpatient department can be useful for predicting duration of and prognostic effects of language therapy, as our study and other previous articles have shown. More attention is needed from pediatricians to ensure the effective assessment and management of specific language impairment.

Keyword

Language disorders; Speech disorders; Child
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