Longitudinal comparison of the speech and language performance of united states–born and internationally adopted toddlers with cleft lip and palate: A pilot study

Nancy Scherer, Shauna Baker, Ann Kaiser, Jennifer R. Frey

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    4 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    Objective: This study compares the early speech and language development of children with cleft palate with or without cleft lip who were adopted internationally with children born in the United States. Design: Prospective longitudinal description of early speech and language development between 18 and 36 months of age. Participants: This study compares four children (age range = 19 to 38 months) with cleft palate with or without cleft lip who were adopted internationally with four children (age range=19 to 38 months) with cleft palate with or without cleft lip who were born in the United States, matched for age, gender, and cleft type across three time points over 10 to 12 months. Main Outcome Measures: Children’s speech-language skills were analyzed using standardized tests, parent surveys, language samples, and single-word phonological assessments to determine differences between the groups. Results: The mean scores for the children in the internationally adopted group were lower than the group born in the United States at all three time points for expressive language and speech sound production measures. Examination of matched pairs demonstrated observable differences for two of the four pairs. No differences were observed in cognitive performance and receptive language measures. Conclusions: The results suggest a cumulative effect of later palate repair and/or a variety of health and environmental factors associated with their early circumstances that persist to age 3 years. Early intervention to address the trajectory of speech and language is warranted. Given the findings from this small pilot study, a larger study of the long-term speech and language development of children who are internationally adopted and have cleft palate with or without cleft lip is recommended.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)941-953
    Number of pages13
    JournalCleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal
    Volume55
    Issue number7
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

    Keywords

    • Assessment
    • Cleft palate
    • International adoption
    • Language
    • Speech

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Oral Surgery
    • Otorhinolaryngology

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