Treating children with co-occurring stuttering and speech sound disorder: a long-term follow up study

Rachael Unicomb*, Sally Hewat, Elisabeth Harrison

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Purpose: To conduct long-term follow-up assessment on children who had previously undergone concurrent, direct treatment for co-occurring stuttering and speech sound disorder. Methods: Four children (6;10–7;7 years) were followed-up approximately 40 months after commencing Stage 1 of the Lidcombe Program. The primary outcome for stuttering, percentage of syllables stuttered, was assessed on within – and beyond-clinic samples. Percentage of consonants correct, the primary speech outcome, was gathered on single-word and connected-speech samples. Primary outcomes were analysed for statistically significant change and to assess stability of treatment gains. Additionally, formal assessment of phonological awareness ability was conducted. Results: At long-term follow-up, 2 participants had experienced relapse of stuttering. Three of the four children were within age-expected norms for percentage of consonants correct, while one participant was rated at a mild-moderate severity level on this measure. All four children had assessment scores that were within normal limits for phonological awareness. Conclusion: Children with co-occurring stuttering and speech sound disorder may be treated concurrently using direct therapy approaches in the short-term, however may be more prone to relapse across both disorders. For this caseload of children, a longer maintenance period is recommended, with regular assessments being undertaken to ensure stability of treatment gains in the long-term.

    Original languageEnglish
    JournalSpeech, Language and Hearing
    Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 5 Aug 2020


    • stuttering
    • speech sound disorder
    • Lidcombe Program
    • long-term follow up
    • concurrent treatment


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