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Application of the ICF in Fluency Disorders
12 October 2007 (online)
Stuttering is a complicated communication disorder that can affect many aspects of a speaker's life. In addition to exhibiting observable disruptions in speech (e.g., part-word repetitions, prolongations, blocks), many people who stutter also experience broader consequences in their lives because of their stuttering. Examples include difficulty with social communication (e.g., speaking with other people, making introductions) and job-related tasks (e.g., talking on the phone, participating in meetings). Because it incorporates these types of daily experiences, the World Health Organization's International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) provides an ideal framework for considering the overall experience of the stuttering disorder. The purpose of this article is to highlight the ways in which the ICF can help clinicians, people who stutter, and the general public understand the multifaceted nature of stuttering. The article will also describe how clinicians can use the ICF as a framework for developing comprehensive evaluations and providing individualized treatment plans for people who stutter.
Stuttering - measurement - treatment outcomes - efficacy
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J. Scott Yaruss, Ph.D.
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