This study examined the relationship between postoperative year and psychological state in 368 patients who underwent a laryngectomy. Correlation analysis revealed that negative emotion negatively correlates with postoperative year, although there was no correlation with self-affirmation, and such correlation is particularly high in the first postoperative year. Variance analysis and multiple comparison suggested that common changes are observed in negative emotion during the first three years after laryngectomy, and some of those changes are most significant in the fifth postoperative year. Based on these results, it appears that psychological support for laryngectomized patients is important especially in the first and fifth years after surgery. Thus, we should provide psychological support based on each individual's postoperative period and the emotional characteristics of patients who have undergone a laryngectomy.
Our previous study found that children with developmental dyslexia used mainly non-lexical processing rather than lexical processing due to inefficient lexical processing during Kana word naming, and their non-lexical processing itself was also slow. The aim of this study was to confirm whether adults with developmental dyslexia also show the same problems, that is, inefficient lexical processing and slow non-lexical processing. To accomplish this aim, we ran a reading aloud experiment investigating effects of length and lexicality on reading latencies for strings of Kana characters. Participants were 7 adults with developmental dyslexia and 48 normal adults. The dyslexic group showed longer reading latencies than the normal group and a significantly large length effect irrespective of lexicality, findings that are compatible with results in our previous study. Therefore it is thought that the adults with developmental dyslexia in this study had the same problems in both lexical and non-lexical processing as the children with developmental dyslexia had in our previous study.
This study analyzed factors related to theory of mind (ToM) development in 12 hearing-impaired children aged 4-7 years whose average hearing level was 75-7 dB (46.2-110 dB, 1 SD 22.7), compared to 12 hearing preschoolers 4-5 years old. Two ToM tasks, the “explanation of action task” and “false belief task,” were evaluated. The results revealed no difference between hearing-impaired subjects and hearing subjects in ability to use mental state to explain causes of human action. On the other hand, hearing-impaired subjects delayed significantly in the false belief task compared to hearing subjects. Hearing-impaired children were likely to delay in meta-representational development, i.e. the ability of representational understanding of others' mind from the others' viewpoint. Hearing-impaired subjects had a higher language development level for acquiring meta-representational ability than hearing subjects. These results suggest that meta-representational development of hearing-impaired children is influenced more by hearing level, language development age or syntax-appropriate utterances than by the hearing threshold level of the aided or implanted ear or the mean length of utterance in morphemes. This study indicated the development of meta-representational ability in hearing-impaired children and the factors related to acquiring that ability. The results are useful as fundamental data for constructing language training programs.
Vocal cord dysfunction (VCD) is characterized by a paradoxical vocal cord movement in which vocal cord adduction on inspiration results in inspiratory stridor around the larynx. Laryngoscopy performed by an otolaryngologist is essential in diagnosis. However, there have been few reports by otorhinolaryngologists regarding VCD. Here we report our experience with a case of VCD, augmented by discussion from related literature. A 24-year-old woman presented with cough two weeks after having come for consultation at the respiratory medicine department. She had been prescribed an antitussive drug, but her symptoms had not improved. She visited the emergency room with a chief complaint of sudden dyspnea with stridor. There were no abnormal findings in a blood test and neck chest CT, and she was referred to undergo a detailed examination the following day. Laryngoscopy revealed vocal cord adduction movement on inspiration. VCD was diagnosed based on the laryngoscopy and clinical findings. We provided treatment by explaining her clinical condition using visual feedback and by larynx relaxation, and the paradoxical vocal cord movement and all other symptoms completely resolved after one month. At the time of writing, the patient remains in complete remission. The physician's failure to recognize VCD can result in misdiagnosis of asthma and incorrect treatment. It is essential that physicians consider VCD in the diagnosis of cases presenting with stridor and dyspnea.
We report on four patients, all professional singers, presenting with spasmodic dysphonia. This condition has not been described in Japan. All four patients had not undergone excessive vocal practice. They demonstrated characteristics of adductor type dysphonia (3 cases) and abductor type dysphonia （1 case) while singing. Botulinum toxin was injected into the laryngeal muscles successfully. We recommend frequent, low-dose injections for adductor spasmodic dysphonia.