A randomized control trial to investigate the impact of the Lidcombe Program on early stuttering in German-speaking preschoolers
In order to investigate whether the Lidcombe Program effects a short-term reduction of stuttered speech beyond natural recovery, 46 German preschool children were randomly assigned to a wait-contrast group or to an experimental group which received the Lidcombe Program for 16 weeks. The children were between 3;0 and 5;11 years old, their and both of their parents' native language was German, stuttering onset had been at least 6 months before, and their stuttering frequency was higher than 3% stuttered syllables. Spontaneous speech samples were recorded at home and in the clinic prior to treatment and after 4 months. Compared to the wait-contrast group, the treatment group showed a significantly higher decrease in stuttered syllables in home-measurements (6.9%SS vs. 1.6%SS) and clinic-measurements (6.8%SS vs. 3.6%SS), and the same increase in articulation rate. The program is considered an enrichment of currently applied early stuttering interventions in Germany. EDUCATIONAL OBJECTIVES: Readers will discuss and evaluate: (1) the short-term effects of the Lidcombe Program in comparison to natural recovery on stuttering; (2) the impact of the Lidcombe Program on early stuttering in German-speaking preschool children.