OSB: What is the aim of your new trial?
JC: In this study, we want to see how the effects of a brief course of fluency therapy might be increased or prolonged by using TDCS. We will use some techniques that we know will immediately increase fluency in most people who stammer, such as speaking in unison with another person or in time with a metronome. However, these techniques would normally need to be combined with other methods to help transfer this fluency into everyday speech. We will investigate how TDCS might help maintain the fluent speech that is produced using these methods.
OSB: What will volunteers be asked to do?
JC: Volunteers will be invited to have fluency therapy over five consecutive days, whilst receiving TDCS. In order to measure the effects of this intervention, they will also be asked to do some speech tasks before the fluency therapy, one week after the fluency therapy, and again six weeks later. We are also interested in how this combination of therapy and TDCS may change brain function and structure. So, volunteers will also be invited for MRI scans before and after the therapy.