NWPF

News ArchivesRead News

Speech Monitoring Could Track Parkinson’s Disease .

Wednesday November 17, 2010

eNews Park Forest - The severity of Parkinson’s disease symptoms could be accurately monitored remotely through analysing a patient’s speech patterns, a new study suggests.

The research, by scientists from Oxford University and Denver, Colorado, examined almost 6,000 speech recordings from 42 people with Parkinson’s. The team found that their new algorithms were able to use this speech data to estimate overall symptom severity with an accuracy very close to assessments made by clinicians.

A report of the research is published in this week’s Interface, a journal of the Royal Society.

‘Currently, monitoring requires frequent visits to hospital where people with Parkinson’s are physically examined by expert clinicians in order to assess their symptom severity, putting a strain on both patients and hospital resources,’ said Dr Max Little of Oxford University, an author of the report.

‘We believe that this technology could help to alleviate the burden on health systems, such as the NHS, and make it feasible to run large-scale clinical trials for the investigation of novel Parkinson’s disease treatments.’

The researchers compared estimates made using the new technique with assessments made by clinicians rated on the standard measure for Parkinson’s severity – the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS). They found that, based on around 140 speech samples from each of the 42 patients, the estimates made using the algorithms differed from clinicians UPDRS ratings by around 2 points out of 55.

The full UPDRS scale is 0-176, but the research only looked at those in the early stages of the disease in the range 0-55 (the team believe these results can be replicated with at least the same accuracy with people in the later stages of the disease).

The study provides good evidence that speech impairment and the average overall severity of other Parkinson’s disease symptoms are very closely linked, suggesting that symptom severity can be measured just by analysing a person’s speech.

‘This sort of remote monitoring – or ‘telemonitoring’ – of people’s health is particularly important for people with Parkinson’s who may find it difficult to make frequent hospital visits,’ said Dr Little. ‘The hope is that our research could pave the way for very large clinical studies of new treatments for Parkinson’s where the sort of frequent monitoring required would not otherwise be affordable.’

Recent News

Sep 12 - Australian Researchers Develop New Diagnostic Tool to Spot Early Signs of Parkinson’s
Sep 11 - GeneFo Webinar to Focus on Using Humor to Manage Parkinson’s Disease
Sep 6 - Parkinson’s and the ‘D’ word
Sep 6 - Compounds in Asthma Drugs Might Be Used as Parkinson’s Treatment
Sep 5 - AstraZeneca Joins Takeda, Berg to Advance Development of Parkinson’s Disease Therapies
Sep 1 - Stem Cell Transplant Trial in Parkinson’s Patients Planned After Test in Japan Succeeds in Monkeys
Sep 1 - Titan to Start Phase 1/2 Study of Subdermal Implant to Deliver Requip to Parkinson’s Patients
Aug 30 - FDA Refuses Acorda’s Inbrija New Drug Application Due to Manufacturing Questions
Aug 23 - Support Groups: Are They for You?
Aug 22 - Internet Visits with Parkinson’s Specialist Can Be as Effective as In-person Visits, Trial Finds
Aug 21 - Cavion’s New CMO to Lead Cav3 Platform Development for Neurological Diseases
Aug 15 - Singing Helps Early-stage Parkinson’s Patients Retain Speech, Respiratory Control, Studies Show
Aug 14 - 16 Tips to Increase Your Mobility Confidence While Living With Parkinson’s Disease
Aug 10 - Boxers are fighting back against Parkinson’s
Aug 9 - Parkinson’s Experiment to Be Aboard Next Flight to International Space Station
Aug 9 - Parkinson’s Disease and Sleeping with the Enemy
Aug 7 - The Importance of Oral Health in Parkinson’s Disease
Aug 7 - Researchers Gain Better Insight Into Alpha-Synuclein’s Role in Parkinson’s Disease
Jul 31 - New Digital Cognitive Assessment Tool Receives Positive FDA Review
Jul 20 - Parkinson’s DREAM Challenge Uses Mobile Sensor Data to Monitor Health Based on Movement