Researchers in the Department of Communicative Sciences and Disorders (CSD) in partnership with researchers at the University of Floridaâ€™s Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, have successfully developed a method for the early detection of Parkinsonâ€™s disease with 93 percent accuracy. The research, which was first presented at the Acoustical Society of America Conference being held October 22-26 in Kansas City, MO., used automated acoustic methods of observing normal speech to detect speech patterns and auditory irregularities consistent with Parkinsonâ€™s disease.
According to principal investigator Rahul Shrivastav, Ph.D., professor and CSD department chair from Michigan State University, this new methodology may not only aid in early detection, but can potentially be used to track the progression of Parkinsonâ€™s disease and quantify the effects of treatment and medication for the disorder.
â€œWhatâ€™s really exciting about this method is that itâ€™s particularly sensitive to Parkinsonâ€™s disease speech, relies on acoustic measurements that have been used for over 30 years, and is effective with only two seconds of speech,â€ said Dr. Shrivastav. â€œThatâ€™s significant in several ways: the detection methodology is non-invasive, easy to administer, inexpensive and capable of being used remotely and in telemedicine applications.â€
Parkinsonâ€™s disease is a neurological disorder affecting a half million people in the U.S. with fifty thousand new diagnosed cases per year (NIH-NINDS). While there is no cure for Parkinsonâ€™s disease, early detection is particularly important since the treatments currently available for controlling symptoms are most effective at that stage.
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