Acceptance of Augmentative and Alternative Communication Technology by Persons with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (short summary)


This study aimed to investigate whether there is a pattern to acceptance of high-tech augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) devices and to investigate the reasons for either acceptance or discontinuance of the use of AAC technology among people who have amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

The researchers found a very high rate of acceptance of AAC technology among the 50 participants. 90% showed immediate acceptance, 6% delayed acceptance and 4% rejection. None of the participants in this study discontinued their use of AAC until very close to the end of their lives.

This study found a higher rate of AAC acceptance than previous studies, possibly reflecting changes in technology and increasing acceptance of AAC within wider society. The authors suggest that factors influencing acceptance of AAC amongst PALS include; early intervention, provision of information about the effects of ALS on speech and language, ongoing contact with specialist professionals, monitoring of changes to ensure timely intervention and keeping PALS aware of AAC services and possible interventions. Further research is needed into these areas and also into the type of cognitive impairment that can be associated with ALS and the influence of this on the use of AAC.

Things you may want to look into:

Real-Life Challenges in Using Augmentative and Alternative Communication by Persons With Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

Supporting communication for patients with neurodegenerative disease

Use of augmentative-alternative communications in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

Don't give up: Employment experiences of individuals with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis who use augmentative and alternative communication

Motor Neurone Disease Association

Added to site May 2016