In 2018 the ADN funded a research scholarship through University of Sydney.  It was our first foray into the world of research as begin to build some real evidence about the human impact of life with a voice disorder, and provide valuable insight for the healthcare professionals that help us to manage our condition.

This study conducted by Jared Hermogenes, looked at the coping styles and strategies used by people living with chronic dysphonia.

Background

Chronic illnesses present individuals with significant challenges, including associated risks to health and psychological related problems. Dysphonia has been shown by previous research to have complex bio-psycho-social implications on individuals’ quality of life. Despite the pervasive effects of dysphonia across an individual’s life, limited literature currently explores the effects of chronicity on how people cope with dysphonia.

Objective

To describe the coping style of individuals with chronic dysphonia and to investigate relationships between coping styles and impact on their quality of life, activity limitations, and participation restrictions in voice-related activities. This study also compared differences between scores on patient-reported outcome measures of individuals with different coping styles, illness and demographic variables.

Findings

The infographic below provides a snapshot of the results and highlights that ‘information seeking’ was the most common coping strategy.  Interestingly for ADN…

“74% of participants reported that accessing social supports was an effective way of coping with chronic dysphonia, despite only 2% reporting that they actively used social support as their preferred coping style”

ADN Infographic-Coping with Chronic Dysphonia

(feel free to download)

Conclusions

The study highlights the importance for voice practitioners to recognise the experiences and coping styles of individuals with chronic dysphonia. Readily available, accurate information about the disorder that promotes increased knowledge of services and supports available may foster healthier coping styles in the population.

You can view a video presentation of the findings delivered to the Voice Foundation Annual Symposium in June this year.

Special thanks to

  • Jared Roduard Hermogenes, BAppSc(SpeechPathology)(Hons)The University of Sydney, NSW
  • A/Prof Steven Cumming B.A (Hons), M.Psych, Ph.D. The University of Sydney, NSW
  • Adj. A/Prof Janet Baker L.A.C.S.T., M.SC., Ph.D., Flinders University, South Australia
  • A/Prof Catherine Madill Ph.D., BAppSc (Hons1), BA (Hons) The University of Sydney, NSW

 

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