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LANGUAGE DISORDERS IN PATIENTS WITH DOWN SYNDROME

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Author(s): Santos-Pérez, ME | Bajo-Santos C

Journal: Revista de la Sociedad Otorrinolaringológica de Castilla y León, Cantabria y La Rioja
ISSN 2171-9381

Volume: 2;
Issue: 9;
Start page: 116;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Down syndrome. Language. Language development disorders. Neurological syndromes

ABSTRACT
Introduction: Language and communication are key to the social and personal development of children affected by Down Syndrome. In addition to the characteristic phenotype, muscle hypotonia and different degrees of mental disability, other diseases may be associated. Oral language is naturally acquired. For this activity there are two requirements: potential brain devices (auditory and visual) and social stimulus existence; being the linguistic affectation variable among individuals. Material and Methods: A detailed report of four cases taken from Phoniatrics Section of the Hospital Virgen Concha de Zamora, evaluated over several years is presented. Discussion and conclusion: Down syndrome patients find difficulties to process the information received. Moderate or even mild hearing loss will influence the phonology and speech production. Language development in these children is slowered. Languageunderstanding is less limited than expression which is usually poor, simplified and with limited vocabulary because of their cognitive difficulties, motor orofacial level and the different characteristics that are associated to this syndrome, but it can become functional. Communication skills are strengthened by the gesture. Learning is greatly hampered by attentional disorders. Early childhood intervention and speech therapy are essential in these cases.
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