The Speech Score: A New Concept in the Evaluation of the Functional Result in the Cleft Patient; A Multicentric Study.

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Author(s): 1.Edwar Alvarez MD, 2. David Alvarez MD, 3 .Andrea Iñiguez MD, 4.Cleidys Pereira Sp. T.

Received: 22/05/2021 | Published: 05/06/2021 | Pages: 20-23 |

Normal speech is an important parameter in an optimal palate repair. The Alvarez Speech Score was developed to evaluate post-repair and post-speech therapy phonation quality. Methodology: Patients older than four years who came for consultation, regardless of their underlying pathology, severity of palatal malformation, sex, and previous surgical repair techniques were included in the study. Speech was assessed in the immediate pre-operative period and then one month postoperatively. The Score was used in 3 countries, by twenty-seven specialists who were trained in the score application. Audio recordings of the corresponding words in each level of Speech articulation were submitted for analysis. Speech was measured at the nasolabial, dental-palatine and velopharyngeal level.5 tests were applied, with a score of 1 – 3 allotted to each test, giving a maximum total of 15. At the end of the practice the results that each specialist obtained were compared in a collective way. Results: 27 patients were included in the study. Comparable and satisfactory scores were obtained between the specialists who scored the speech samples. Table 1, 2,3 and 4 depict the breakup of the results obtained. Conclusion: The Alvarez Score proved to be an easy and reproducible application instrument. It provides a useful measure of parameters for the evaluation of surgical results, and gauges the competency level and technical skills of the Cleft Surgeons. It can also serve as a quality control tool.