Speech and language disorders in older Canadians: Epidemiologic primary care-based research using the CPCSSN database



Rebecca Miyagishima, Neil Drummond, Linda Carroll, Tammy Hopper



Rebecca Miyagishima at rcleonar@ualberta.ca



Primary Health Care Research Endowment Fund



Manuscript Written





Speech and language disorders affecting older Canadians include the language disorder aphasia and the speech disorders dysarthria, apraxia and stuttering. Speech and language disorders may result from conditions including stroke, dementia and Parkinson's disease which affect many older adults across the country. As many as 13% of older adults (aged 65+) have been reported to suffer from disorders of speech and/or language.


The goals of this study were to validate a case definition for speech and language disorders specific to older adults in Canadian primary care clinics in order to assess prevalence and examine the epidemiological characteristics of this population.


Patient chart review was considered the gold standard for validation against a computer algorithm of the case definition applicable to the SAPCReN-CPCSSN database. Prevalence was estimated using the patient chart review and the case definition was evaluated for sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value and negative predictive value.