Speech evaluation of velopharyngeal dysfunction

Bonnie E. Smith, David P. Kuehn

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


This article reviews concepts basic to the evaluation of the speech of persons with velopharyngeal dysfunction. It defines velopharyngeal dysfunction as well as reviews normal and abnormal velopharyngeal function for speech. It defines the common speech characteristics of persons with velopharyngeal dysfunction, including hypernasality, hyponasality, nasal emission, compensatory articulations, and weak pressure consonants. Speech sounds commonly impacted by velopharyngeal dysfunction are discussed. This article identifies the components of a complete speech evaluation as well as identifies anatomic and physiologic measurements of palatal function used to corroborate perceptual speech judgments indicating palatal problems. It identifies special considerations in the evaluation of persons with suspected velopharyngeal dysfunction. It briefly discusses management of velopharyngeal dysfunction. Review questions follow the article.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)251-261
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Craniofacial Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2007


  • Instrumental assessment of velopharyngeal function
  • Review questions
  • Treatment for velopharyngeal dysfunction
  • Velopharyngeal dysfunction
  • Velopharyngeal speech disorders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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