LSVT LOUD® and LSVT BIG are effective treatment approaches for individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) and other neurological conditions. These two programs are completed by trained occupational therapists, physical therapists and speech therapists. Together, these therapists will often complete the program as a team in order to work with the client on a more holistic approach.
LSVT LOUD® is provided by speech therapists certified in the treatment approach. Published research data supports improvements in vocal loudness, intonation, and voice quality for individuals with PD who received LSVT LOUD, with improvements maintained up to two years after treatment. Recent research studies have also documented the effectiveness of this therapy in improving the common problems of disordered articulation, diminished facial expression and impaired swallowing. Additionally, two brain imaging studies have documented evidence of positive changes in the brain following administration of the therapy.
LSVT LOUD improves vocal loudness by stimulating the muscles of the voice box (larynx) and speech mechanism through a systematic hierarchy of exercises. Focused on a single goal "speak LOUD!"—the treatment improves respiratory, laryngeal and articulatory function to maximize speech intelligibility.
LSVT BIG® is provided by physical and occupational therapists certified in the treatment approach. There has been documentation of both the long term and short term improvements when utilizing the LSVT BIG approach. Specifically, the LSVT BIG training is driven by both intensive and complex exercises, with the focus of the exercises being on high intensity, amplitude, and calibration.
The goal of LSVT BIG is to increase the amplitude of limb and body movement (Bigness) in people with PD. Therefore decreasing the amount of tremors and shuffling and improving trunk rotation and gait. The program has also been generalized to improve speed (upper/lower limbs), balance, and quality of life. In addition, people were able to maintain these improvements when challenged with a dual task. With these goals in mind, this type of practice is necessary to optimize learning and carryover of your better movement into everyday life!