No AccessAmerican Journal of Speech-Language PathologyResearch Article4 Nov 2021

Relationships Across Clinical Measures of Vocal Quality and Functioning and Their Relationship With Patient Perception


    The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships among subjective auditory-perceptual ratings of vocal quality, objective acoustic and aerodynamic measures of vocal function, and patient-perceived severity of their vocal complaint.


    This study was a retrospective chart review of adult patients evaluated at a single outpatient center over a 1.5-year time period. Twenty-two clinical objective and subjective measures of voice were extracted from 676 charts (310 males, 366 females). To identify the underlying concepts addressed in an initial voice assessment, principal component analyses were conducted for males and females to account for sex differences. Linear regression models were conducted to examine the relationship between the principal components and patient perceived severity.


    Seven principal components were identified for both sexes and accounted for 75% and 71% of the variance in the clinical measures, respectively. Of these seven principal components, only two predicted male patient perceived severity, which accounted for 22% of the variance. In contrast, four principal components predicted female patient perceived severity of their voice disorder and accounted for 19% of the variance.


    The results highlight the underlying aspects of vocal quality and functioning that are evaluated during an initial assessment. Male and female patients differ in which of these components may contribute self-perceived severity of a voice disorder. Identifying these underlying components may support clinical decision making when developing a clinical protocol and highlights the overlap between patient concerns and clinical measures.

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