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Evaluation and treatment of speech and language disorders in children

James Carter, MA, CCC-SLP
Karol Musher, MA, CCC-SLP
Section Editors
Teresa K Duryea, MD
Marilyn Augustyn, MD
Deputy Editor
Mary M Torchia, MD


Developmental language disorder is the most common developmental disability of childhood, occurring in 5 to 10 percent of children [1-3]. Children learn language in early childhood; later they use language to learn. Children with language disorders are at increased risk for difficulty with reading and written language when they enter school [4-10]. These problems often persist through adolescence or adulthood. Early intervention may prevent the more serious consequences of later learning disabilities. (See "Specific learning disabilities in children: Clinical features".)

Speech and language evaluation in children has three components:

To determine whether an impairment in communication skills exists

To specify the nature of any impairments

To initiate appropriate intervention strategies

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Literature review current through: Nov 2017. | This topic last updated: Sep 28, 2017.
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