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Text-to-speech apps: empowering communication in head and neck patients

Published:October 20, 2021DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bjoms.2021.10.003
      Head and neck cancer remains one of the most common cancers in the UK, with a 16% increase in incidence over the last decade.

      Cancer Research UK. Head and neck cancers statistics. Available from URL: https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/health-professional/cancer-statistics/statistics-by-cancer-type/head-and-neck-cancers#heading-Zero (last accessed 10 December 2021).

      Head and neck surgery, including tracheostomy placement, leads to acute loss of voice for the patient. The breakdown in communication between the patient and the medical team often results in a challenging postoperative journey, with the patient feeling unheard, isolated, and lacking individualised care.
      • Carroll S.M.
      Nonvocal ventilated patients perceptions of being understood.
      This additionally is challenging for nursing staff, with many of the difficulties arising due to a lack of effective communication aids.
      • Hemsley B.
      • Sigafoos J.
      • Balandin S.
      • et al.
      Nursing the patient with severe communication impairment.

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      References

      1. Cancer Research UK. Head and neck cancers statistics. Available from URL: https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/health-professional/cancer-statistics/statistics-by-cancer-type/head-and-neck-cancers#heading-Zero (last accessed 10 December 2021).

        • Carroll S.M.
        Nonvocal ventilated patients perceptions of being understood.
        West J Nurs Res. 2004; 26: 85-112
        • Hemsley B.
        • Sigafoos J.
        • Balandin S.
        • et al.
        Nursing the patient with severe communication impairment.
        J Adv Nurs. 2001; 35: 827-835
        • Ganz J.B.
        • Morin K.L.
        • Foster M.J.
        • et al.
        High-technology augmentative and alternative communication for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and complex communication needs: a meta-analysis.
        Augment Altern Commun. 2017; 33: 224-238