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  Patronage of the Polish Society of Audiology and Phoniatrics

vol 10. no 4. December 2011  

 Original articles
Mel cepstral analysis of voice in patients with vocal nodules
Ewa Niebudek-Bogusz, Jacek Grygiel, Paweł Strumiłło, Mariola Śliwińska-Kowalska

Introduction. It has been shown that acoustic analysis could be
a valuable objective tool for diagnosing of dysphonia. Recently,
special attention is paid to mel cepstral domain, which is
obtained by transforming nonlinearly the frequency scale of the
analysed voice signals.
Aim. To assess the applicability of Mel Frequency Cepstral
Coefficients (MFCC) in acoustic analysis of voice in patients
with vocal nodules.
Materials and methods. The study comprised 40 female
controls with normal voice (mean age 43 years) and 40 females
with vocal nodules (mean age 41 years). The acoustic testing
involved recording sustained vowels ‘a’ and four standarised
sentences. The voice samples were analyzed by computed
analysis of MFCCs in which the Sammon projection was
employed for data dimensionality reduction and the Support
Vector Machines for data classification.
Results. The comparison of MFCC results revealed significant
differences between study group with dysphonia due vocal
nodules and controls. The following diagnostic test performances
for patients with vocal nodules were obtained: 1) 72% sensitivity
and 70% specificity for the sustained vowel, 2) 87% sensitivity
and 90% specificity for the standardized sentences (averaged
for 4 sentences). The results presented better accuracies for
the standardized sentences. This is in agreement with a recent
finding that continuous speech provides richer information about
harmonic disorders in comparison to sustained utterances of
Conclusions. The mel cepstral-based analysis of the voice
samples can be a promising tool for estimation of harmonic
disturbances in pathological voices. Further studies on larger
groups of subjects are required.

keywords: analiza kepstralna, obiektywna ocena dysfonii, guzki głosowe, cepstral analysis, objective assessment ofdysphonia, vocal nodules

pages: from 176 to 181

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