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Article
March 23, 1929

IS THE TREATMENT OF SPEECH DISORDERS A MEDICAL PROBLEM?

JAMA. 1929;92(12):958-962. doi:10.1001/jama.1929.02700380016005
Abstract

The present treatment of speech disorders is for the most part conducted by pedagogues. The public schools of the large cities have departments of speech improvement under lay supervision and the actual treatment is done by school teachers, who perhaps have taken one or more postgraduate courses in colleges where they were taught by the professors of elocution or public speaking. Nowhere has it been impressed on them that they were dealing with a pathologic process. The fault also lies with the medical profession, for I know of no medical school where the subject of speech defects is considered part of the curriculum. When it is realized how closely the speech process is associated with psychiatry, neurology, mental hygiene, rhinology, laryngology, otology and applied psychology, it will be readily appreciated that good results can be obtained only if the treatment is considered a medical problem. Teachers are absolutely necessary for

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