Phoniatrics and Speech Pathology

​Leitung Forschung:

​Dr. phil. Meike Brockmann-Bauser, MSc, Curriculum Vitae (PDF)
Dr. med. Jörg Bohlender, KD


​KD Dr. med. Dorothe Veraguth
Marilia Carvalho Sampaio, PhD Prof.
Dr. med. Stephanie Reetz
Dr. med. Kathrin Hegemann
Naomi Iob, Dissertantin
Susanne Bauer, MA, Dissertantin
Ruth Hangartner, Dissertantin
Silvan Marti, Dissertant
Stephanie Diehl, MSc
Ursula Colotto-Vith, Speech Pathologist


​In der Arbeitsgruppe Phoniatrie und Klinische Logopädie arbeiten Fachleute der Disziplinen Phoniatrie und Otorhinolaryngologie, Biomedizinische Wissenschaften und Klinische Logopädie interdisziplinär an verbesserten Möglichkeiten der klinischen Diagnostik und Therapie von Patienten mit Schluck- und Stimmstörungen. Schwerpunkte in der angewandten Forschung sind die Erprobung und Validierung symptomspezifischer Fragebögen und die Untersuchung von Behandlungseffekten bei Patienten mit Schluck- und Stimmstörungen. Die Grundlagenforschung umfasst Projekte zur Optimierung von computergestützten instrumentellen akustischen Analysen der menschlichen Stimme in der klinischen Diagnostik von Stimmerkrankungen. Wir betreuen akademische Qualifikationsarbeiten in der Medizin, Biomedizinischen Wissenschaften, Logopädie, Patholinguistik und Physiotherapie.

Projekt 1

Studying the Behavior of Acoustic Measures of the PRAAT Program in Voice Evaluation

M. Carvalho Sampaio, J. Bohlender, M. Brockmann-Bauser

PRAAT is a free software widely applied in scientific research across disciplines to objectively measure human voice sound features. To date the evidence base for the clinical application to characterize and diagnose voice disorders is limited. One obstacle is the lack of reliable reference values of vocal measures provided by PRAAT. Thus, the normalization and validation of these acoustic parameters may offer an important contribution to their clinical use, and facilitates better data comparability to research studies.

In a cross sectional study, recordings of voice patients with a variety of voice disorders will be assessed using PRAAT. Normative values for co-called traditional perturbation parameters such as jitter and spectral indices such as Cepstral Peak Prominence (CPP) will be tested for known influencing factors including gender, age, profession, vocal sample and vowel type (i.e. in sustained phonation versus speech), vocal intensity and fundamental frequency. Further, their accuracy to detect pathology and the relation to perceptual and subjective voice findings will be investigated in a multicenter study.

Projekt 2

Characteristics of dysphagia and dysphonia in patients with unilateral vocal fold paralysis: a retrospective analysis

R. Hangartner, S. Marti, S. Reetz, J. Bohlender, M. Brockmann-Bauser

Unilateral vocal fold motion impairment (UVFMI) is a common diagnosis in ear, nose and throat specialized clinics. Voice dysfunction, dysphagia and respiratory complaints are well known clinical symptoms of UVFMI. While voice disorders and the corresponding treatments have been described in various studies, only little attention has been paid to subjective dysphagia, respiratory symptoms and functional voice outcomes. Main aims of this study are to investigate swallowing, voice and respiratory characteristics and their relationship applying standardized questionnaires, and to determine the predictive value of the questionnaires with regard to corresponding treatment options. Further, functional voice changes with regard to age and type of treatment will be investigated.

Projekt 3

Transcultural translation and validation of the German Vocal Fatigue Index (VFI)

M. Brockmann-Bauser, K. Hegemann, J. Bohlender

Vocal fatigue has been described as a common complaint in patients with voice disorders. However to date there is no standardized questionnaire in german language to assess specific symptoms. Main aim of this prospective study is to assess the validity and retest reliability of the first german version of the Vocal Fatigue Index (VFI), an english questionnaire developed for voice patients to assess potential symptoms of vocal fatigue.

Projekt 4

Swallowing function and quality of life in patients with oropharyngeal and/or hypopharyngeal carcinoma

S. Bauer, J.E. Bohlender, E. Hartmann, M. Brockmann-Bauser

Dysphagia is a common finding in patients with oropharyngeal and hypopharyngeal cancer. The prevalence may be as high as 78%, depending on the tumor location, size and oncological treatment, but also on the assessment methods applied. Especially after irradiation, delayed dysphagia leads to malnutrition in 35 to 60%, and aspiration pneumonia in 5 to 25% of patients. Thus, these factors determine survival after successful tumor therapy to a much higher degree than previously assumed. To date, there is a lack of clarity regarding the relationship between objective swallowing function, subjective swallowing handicap and swallowing-related quality of life. Main aim of this work is to determine the occurrence, severity, influencing factors and course of dysphagia in patients with oropharyngeal and/or hypopharyngeal carcinoma throughout cancer treatment by applying objective and subjective assessment methods.

Cooperation Partners
  • Center for Laryngeal Surgery and Voice Rehabilitation, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA, Prof. R. Hillman, Dr. D. Mehta, Dr. J. van Stan
  • Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaft und Kunst Hildesheim/Holzminden/Göttingen, Deutschland, Prof. U. Beushausen
  • KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Dept. for Speech Music and Hearing, Stockholm, Sweden, Prof. S. Ternström
  • Federal University of Bahia, Dept. of Speech-Language and Hearing Sciences, Salvador-BA, Brasilia, Prof. M. L. Masson, Prof. M. F. De Paula Soares
  • Universität Fribourg, Departement für Sonder- und Heilpädagogik, Fribourg, Schweiz, S. Bauer MA




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