The effect of nasal speaking valve on the speech under experimental velopharyngeal incompetence condition

M. Suwaki, K. Nanba, E. Ito, I. Kumakura, S. Minagi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Velopharyngeal incompetence (VPI) is a contributing factor to speech disorders, frequently accompanying disorders, such as cleft palate, congenital paralysis of the soft palate, and cerebrovascular disease. For the treatment of these types of dysarthria, a Nasal Speaking Valve (NSV), which regulates nasal emission utilizing one-way valve, has been reported to be effective. As the unpleasantness while wearing the NSV was less than that with the conventional Palatal Lift Prosthesis, the NSV could be worn for a longer period of time. As NSV is inserted into the nostrils, this device could easily be provided for edentulous patients. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of NSV on experimentally induced VPI condition. Intelligibility of monosyllabic speech, intelligibility of conversational speech, nasalance score and acoustic analysis were used to evaluate the effect of NSV. Local infiltration anaesthesia was achieved to the area of levator veli palatini muscle and tensor veli palatine muscle of seven adult male subjects. In all subjects, remarkable suppression of the soft palate movement could be observed after the local infiltration anesthesia. Although the utterance supported by NSV under the experimentally induced VPI condition was less natural than the normal utterance, the intelligibility was markedly improved by the device. From the results of this study, the acoustic properties of NSV on the pure VPI condition, which was enabled by the newly established experimental induction, were revealed. This experimental model was also proved to provide a basis for the improvement in the treatment modalities for VPI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)361-369
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of oral rehabilitation
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2008


  • Dysarthria
  • Hypernasality
  • Intelligibility
  • Palatal lift prosthesis
  • Speech
  • Velopharyngeal incompetence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dentistry(all)


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