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BOOK REVIEW Table of Contents   
Year : 1998  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 77-78
Profound deafness and speech communication

Audiological Scientist, Royal National Throat, Nose and Ear Hospital, London, United Kingdom

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How to cite this article:
Craddock L. Profound deafness and speech communication. Noise Health 1998;1:77-8

How to cite this URL:
Craddock L. Profound deafness and speech communication. Noise Health [serial online] 1998 [cited 2022 Jan 27];1:77-8. Available from: https://www.noiseandhealth.org/text.asp?1998/1/1/77/32837
Geoff Plant, and Karl-Erik Spens (Editors)

Whurr Publishers Ltd., London 1995: ISBN 1 897635 45 1 Price: £48.00

This book is dedicated to Arne Risberg, Professor of Hearing Technology at Stockholm's Royal Institute of Technology and it marks his retirement as one of the world's leading researchers into profound hearing loss. The book addresses the development and use of sensory aids for deaf people, including tactile aids and cochlear implants. The difficulties involved in developing speech perception and production assessments and also rehabilitation programmes for this population are discussed, including the use of computer-based training.

The list of contributors is varied, ranging from well-known figures from the world of audiological research, such as Arthur Boothroyd, Graeme Clark, Harvey Dillon and Mary Joe Osberger, to several colleagues of Arne Risberg's and also deaf adults with first-hand experience of using sensory aids. This diversity results in a variety of styles throughout the book and as a result, it is hard to identify clearly the intended readership. Some chapters address latest research in an area, providing students and professionals with useful references and information. Others offer a more personal, anecdotal account of individual experiences. For example, Gustaf Soderlund's chapter on Tactiling in Part I describes his own method of using vibrotactile cues from the speaker's neck to enhance speech≠reading. Similarly, Part II on Cochlear Implants contains another personal account by Anita Wallin, a Swedish Implantee. Her description of the initial connection period, the limitations and the benefits of her implant, offers a fascinating insight to the layperson.

In contrast, other sections, such as the chapter by Adele Proctor, "Tactile Aid Usage in Young Deaf Children", provide a thorough review of recent literature, Proctor sets this out in a clear and comprehensive table, comparing the outcomes of various studies. A second table lists the reported benefits of tactile aids and make this one of the most useful sections for students in the book. Likewise, Mary Joe Osberger's chapter "Speech Perception and Production Skills in Children with Cochlear Implants", is another that students and professionals would find invaluable, offering an overview of the more commonly used assessment tools and also giving the reader a concise review of the latest research on outcome measures in children. This is clearly summarised at the end of the chapter and is followed by an outline of future research needs.

This publication attempts to offer something for everyone, from the layperson with a particular interest in profound hearing loss, to students and professionals working with tactile aids, cochlear implants and in rehabilitation. Unfortunately, since it covers such a wide remit, the book is unlikely to fully satisfy anyone. Whilst there is plenty of information in each of the five sections, there is a tendency for repetition from chapter to chapter. At times, even though the information is interesting and relevant, it is difficult to access from rather dense text. Some sections are excellent, containing current, comprehensive and concise material, often summarised in a chart or table. Although these sections provide a useful reference source, students and professionals working with the profoundly deaf might be better advised to purchase one of the many texts currently avialable that have a more specific focus.

Correspondence Address:
Louise Craddock
Audiological Scientist, Royal National Throat, Nose and Ear Hospital, London
United Kingdom
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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