Dysarthria in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: A review

Amyotroph Lateral Scler. 2010;11(1-2):4-15. doi: 10.3109/17482960802379004.


Dysarthria is a motor disorder of speech characterized by abnormalities of the articulation and intelligibility of speech. Phonation and the rate of facial movements may also be affected. Understanding the nature and course of dysarthria in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is important because loss of communication prevents patients from participating in many activities, may lead to social isolation, and reduces the quality of life. The goal of management of dysarthria in ALS patients is to optimize communication effectiveness for as long as possible. The information about dysarthria in ALS is dispersed in physiological, pathological, speech therapy, otorhinolaringological and neurological publications. This review summarizes the current state of knowledge on the clinical features, differential diagnosis, pathophysiology, investigations and management of dysarthria in ALS patients. There is a need to compare the different methods used to assess dysarthria and for controlled clinical trials to assess therapeutic strategies.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis / complications*
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis / physiopathology*
  • Dysarthria* / etiology
  • Dysarthria* / physiopathology
  • Dysarthria* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Speech Therapy*