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Indexed under : Psychology / Disorders

Wikenigma - an Encyclopedia of Unknowns Wikenigma - an Encyclopedia of the Unknown


Stuttering, estimated to affect 55 million people worldwide, is defined as :

- a disruption in the fluency of verbal expression characterized by involuntary, audible or silent, repetitions or prolongations of sounds or syllables“
[ source below ]

Over the centuries, a number of theories about how stuttering arises (and what treatment approaches should be used) have been proposed.

It tends to affect children more than adults - and boys four times more than girls. It's currently unknown whether stuttering is a cognitive, motor, or sensory disorder - or some combination of the three.

Recent progress in near-realtime brain imaging studies have found that :

(i) in stutterers, the right hemisphere seems to be hyperactive, and (ii) a timing problem seems to exist between the left frontal and the left central cortex.”
[ source below ]

Current medical treatments tend to be based around 'neuroleptic' (anti-psychotic) drugs such as haloperidol, risperidone, and olanzapine - which are also used to help control Tourette syndromeplugin-autotooltip__plain plugin-autotooltip_bigTourette syndrome

Tourette syndrome (TS or Tourette's) is a common neuro-psychiatric disorder which usually starts in childhood and is characterized by multiple motor tics and at least one vocal tic. These tics characteristically wax and wane in intensity and frequency…

See : PLoS Biol 2(2): e46Open Access


[1] Several studies have documented the fact that over 90% of people who stutter in normal speech can sing song-lyrics without any difficulties. There is no explanation for this effect. [ Ref : Psychomusicology: Music, Mind and Brain Vol. 31, Iss. 1, (Mar 2021): 18-34 ]

[2] It's known that in some cases the disorder has a genetic component, as it tends to run in families. The associated genes have not been identified.

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