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PSYCHOPATHOLOGY OF STUTTERING
J. LOUISE DESPERT
Am J Psychiatry 1943;99:881-885.
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The New York Hospital and the Department of Psychiatry Cornell University Medical College New York.

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Abstract

The speech structures are described from the point of view of their relation to the upper respiratory and upper digestive tract. Their utilization in the finely co-ordinated function of speech is also described. The stuttering disorder is defined, and the predominance of tonic or clonic features is emphasized. Associated movements, respiratory and vasomotor disturbances are included. The theories of the etiology of stuttering are reviewed. The findings of a detailed clinical study of 15 cases of stuttering in children are summarized, and the psychodynamic factors analyzed. One typical case is presented from the point of view of anamnestic data, etiology, treatment and course. The importance of maternal neurotic attitudes in the early eating-speaking situation where the transfer of functions of oral structures attains is brought out. Other developmental phases coincident with the period of this early eating-speaking situation are studied from the point of view of contributing factors.

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