Intensive voice treatment in Parkinson's disease: Lee Silverman Voice Treatment

Shimon Sapir, Lorraine O. Ramig, Cynthia M. Fox

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Advances in neuroscience have led to an expanded and improved understanding of neurobiological changes associated with rehabilitation and exercise in Parkinson's disease (PD). This knowledge has led to a direct clinical impact of increased referral for early and continuous exercise programs for individuals with PD (physical, occupational, speech therapy and general exercise programs) and an increased research focus on the impact of such approaches in humans with PD. The purpose of this article is to examine the role of speech therapy in the landscape of exercise-based interventions for individuals with PD. We will specifically focus on the intensive voice treatment protocol, Lee Silverman Voice Treatment, as an example therapy. This article will briefly review the literature on the characteristics and features of speech and voice disorders in individuals with PD, and will discuss the impact of pharmacological and surgical treatment techniques on these disorders. This will be followed by a focus on behavioral speech treatment, specifically Lee Silverman Voice Treatment, including development of the treatment approach, documenting efficacy, discovery of unexpected outcomes and insights into the mechanism of speech disorders in PD gained from treatment-related changes. This research will be placed in the context of other previous and current speech treatment approaches in development for individuals with PD, and will highlight future directions for research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)815-830
Number of pages16
JournalExpert Review of Neurotherapeutics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2011
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research has been funded by the NIH grant R01 DC1150 from the National Institutes of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. Lorraine O Ramig and Cynthia M Fox receive lecture honoraria and have ownership interest in LSVT Global, Inc. They have disclosed any conflict of interest and their conflict of interest management plan has been approved by the Office of Conflict of Interest and Commitment at the University of Colorado, Boulder. The authors have no other relevant affiliations or financial involvement with any organization or entity with a financial interest in or financial conflict with the subject matter or materials discussed in the manuscript apart from those disclosed.


  • LSVT
  • Lee Silverman Voice Treatment
  • Parkinson's disease
  • neural plasticity
  • speech and voice disorders
  • swallowing disorders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • General Neuroscience


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