5th International Conference on Spoken Language Processing

Sydney, Australia
November 30 - December 4, 1998

Abnormal Volume-Duration Relationship in Parkinsonian Speech

Aileen K. Ho (1), John L. Bradshaw (1), Robert Iansek (2), Robin J. Alfredson (3)

(1) Psychology Dept, Monash University, Australia
(2) Geriatric Research Unit, Kingston Centre, Australia
(3) Dept of Mechanical Engineering, Monash University, Australia

Past studies on Parkinsonian speech have generally examined the parameters of speech separately. Thus volume and suprasegmental duration have largely been described independently of each other on the assumption that two measures are not related. This assumption was tested by manipulating intensity and examining the corresponding effect on duration. Twelve Parkinson's disease (PD) patients and twelve normal healthy controls read according to three conditions; as softly as possible, as loudly as possible, and with no volume instruction (at normal volume). Total Duration of reading (with pauses), and Net Duration (without pauses) were examined. For Net Duration, both groups were similar, and did not vary across volume conditions. PD patients, however, demonstrated decreased Total Duration as speech volume was increased. The abnormal Parkinsonian relationship is suggestive of a trade-off between the two parameters in order to achieve adequately loud reading, and may be explained by increased attention associated with increased effort when speaking louder.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Ho, Aileen K. / Bradshaw, John L. / Iansek, Robert / Alfredson, Robin J. (1998): "Abnormal volume-duration relationship in parkinsonian speech", In ICSLP-1998, paper 0011.