Leanne Togher

Leanne Togher
The University of Sydney · Discipline of Speech Pathology

B.App.Sc. (Speech Path) Ph.D.

About

244
Publications
135,138
Reads
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5,646
Citations
Introduction
Leanne is the recipient of her 3rd consecutive NHMRC Senior Research Fellowship and in 2018 was awarded the NHMRC Elizabeth Blackburn Fellowship Award for being the highest ranked female research fellow applicant in Clinical Medicine and Science in Australia. Leanne is working on 2 NHMRC funded projects, including the ASK trial and the COMPARE trial. She is leading a program of research in the field of digital health and brain injury rehabilitation. Leanne is the Research Leader for Communication Sciences and Disorders at the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Sydney. Leanne's research team comprises postdoctoral fellows, Honours, Master and PhD students. She is the Director of speechBITE (www.speechbite.com). She was the Associate Dean Research for her Faculty 2016-17.
Additional affiliations
July 2016 - present
The University of Sydney
Position
  • Associate Dean Research
Education
January 1992 - December 1998
The University of Sydney
Field of study
  • Speech pathology

Publications

Publications (244)
Article
Background More than 135 million people worldwide live with acquired brain injury (ABI) and its many psychosocial sequelae. This growing global burden necessitates scalable rehabilitation services. Despite demonstrated potential to increase the accessibility and scalability of psychosocial supports, digital health interventions are challenging to i...
Article
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) leads to cognitive linguistic deficits that significantly impact on quality of life and wellbeing. Digital health offers timely access to specialised services, however there are few synthesized reviews in this field. This review evaluates and synthesises reports of digital health interventions in TBI rehabilitation and...
Article
It has been well established that positive identity construction or reconstruction is important for positive rehabilitation outcomes after Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Such identities are constructed and communicated through interactional exchanges. In this study, the tools of systemic functional linguistics are used to investigate how language wa...
Article
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Background: In 2020 and 2021, people increasingly used the internet to connect socially and professionally. However, people with an acquired brain injury (ABI) experience challenges in using social media, and rehabilitation professionals have reported feeling underprepared to support them in its use. To date, no review of social media skills train...
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Full-text available
Background While meta-analyses confirm treatment for chronic post-stroke aphasia is effective, a lack of comparative evidence for different interventions limits prescription accuracy. We investigated whether Constraint-Induced Aphasia Therapy Plus (CIAT-plus) and/or Multimodality Aphasia Therapy (M-MAT) provided greater therapeutic benefit compared...
Article
Background: The Social Brain Toolkit, conceived and developed in partnership with stakeholders, is a novel suite of web-based communication interventions for people with brain injury and their communication partners. To support effective implementation, the developers of the Social Brain Toolkit have collaborated with people with brain injury, com...
Preprint
BACKGROUND In 2020 and 2021, people increasingly used the internet to connect socially and professionally. However, people with an acquired brain injury (ABI) experience challenges in using social media, and rehabilitation professionals have reported feeling underprepared to support them in its use. To date, no review of social media skills trainin...
Preprint
BACKGROUND The Social Brain Toolkit, conceived and developed in partnership with stakeholders, is a novel suite of web-based communication interventions for people with brain injury and their communication partners. To support effective implementation, the developers of the Social Brain Toolkit have collaborated with people with brain injury, commu...
Article
Full-text available
Children with neurodevelopmental disorders share common phenotypes, support needs and comorbidities. Such overlap suggests the value of transdiagnostic assessment pathways that contribute to knowledge about research and clinical needs of these children and their families. Despite this, large transdiagnostic data collection networks for neurodevelop...
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Background As the burden of neurological conditions increases globally, online psychosocial interventions offer a potentially scalable solution to enabling healthcare access. However, their successful development and implementation require research into electronic healthcare implementation specifically. Methods Using a search strategy combining th...
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Background Virtual reality (VR) is increasingly being used for the assessment and treatment of impairments arising from acquired brain injuries (ABIs) due to perceived benefits over traditional methods. However, no tailored options exist for the design and implementation of VR for ABI rehabilitation and, more specifically, traumatic brain injury (T...
Article
Background Acquired brain injuries (ABIs) commonly cause cognitive-communication disorders, which can have a pervasive psychosocial impact on a person’s life. More than 135 million people worldwide currently live with ABI, and this large and growing burden is increasingly surpassing global rehabilitation service capacity. A web-based service delive...
Preprint
BACKGROUND Acquired brain injuries (ABIs) commonly cause cognitive-communication disorders, which can have a pervasive psychosocial impact on a person’s life. More than 135 million people worldwide currently live with ABI, and this large and growing burden is increasingly surpassing global rehabilitation service capacity. A web-based service delive...
Chapter
A social, life participation based approach to assessing and intervening for acquired cognitive disorders, such as traumatic brain injury and dementia. It includes a framework for assessment under this model, as well as interventions. Further, it shares the lived experiences of people with brain injuries and dementia; and their partners' perspectiv...
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Full-text available
While high-quality meta-analyses have confirmed the effectiveness of aphasia therapy after stroke, there is limited evidence for the comparative effectiveness of different aphasia interventions. Two commonly used interventions, Constraint-induced Aphasia Therapy Plus (CIAT Plus) and Multi-modality Aphasia Therapy (M-MAT), are hypothesised to rely o...
Article
Purpose Individuals with cognitive communication difficulties after traumatic brain injury (TBI) often experience difficulties with social communication. Humor is a sociolinguistic skill that requires social, cognitive, emotional, and behavioral skills and, when used effectively, may serve to enhance one's social relationships. There is a paucity o...
Article
Purpose: Narrative discourse (e.g., telling anecdotes or relating personal events) comprises a key part of social interaction and is commonly affected after traumatic brain injury (TBI). Research over the past decades has enabled improved characterization of discourse impairment after TBI, but a critical lack of research into discourse intervention...
Article
Primary Objective: To identify how families experience cognitive-communication difficulties following Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Experiences of information, training and support for managing communication changes were also explored. Research Design: Qualitative focus group methodology using thematic analysis. Method: 15 family members of individ...
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Purpose The aim of the study was to investigate the experiences of people with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and rehabilitation professionals in use of social media after TBI. Design Metasynthesis of a multilevel mixed-methods research design was used in the study. Method A qualitative metasynthesis of (a) evidence in the literature regarding the...
Preprint
BACKGROUND Virtual reality (VR) is increasingly being used for the assessment and treatment of impairments arising from acquired brain injuries (ABIs) due to perceived benefits over traditional methods. However, no tailored options exist for the design and implementation of VR for ABI rehabilitation and, more specifically, traumatic brain injury (T...
Article
Objective The aim of this qualitative study was to understand processes involved in the maintenance and development of friendships after a person sustains a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Method Four people with severe TBI from rural settings in Australia identified one-to-two friends to be interviewed. A total of nine friends participated in a sem...
Article
Introduction Few self-administered outcome measures are available for communication partner training (CPT) programs for aphasia. The Aphasia Attitudes, Strategies, and Knowledge (AASK) survey was developed to align with and evaluate three key ingredients of the Supported Conversation for adults with Aphasia (SCA™) communication partner training mod...
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Background Whilst research into the wide‐ranging needs of family members following traumatic brain injury (TBI) is well established, investigation into the specific needs of families in relation to supporting cognitive–communication difficulties, relationships and social participation is limited. Aims To identify the family needs for cognitive‐com...
Article
Background Training conversation partners of people with aphasia who use facilitative communication strategies is one method that can improve access to healthcare for people with aphasia. However, the efficacy of communication partner training (CPT) has been investigated almost exclusively in the context of face‐to‐face (F2F) delivery. Online train...
Article
Objective To investigate current speech pathology practice regarding working with friends. Method An online survey was conducted with 68 speech pathologists who worked with TBI across metropolitan and rural settings in Australia. The survey investigated the reasons speech pathologists work with friends, barriers to working with friends and percept...
Article
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Optimizing intensity for aphasia treatment is a high priority research issue for people with aphasia, their families and clinicians, and could result in healthcare cost savings. An important aspect of intensity is the frequency of intervention, or how regularly treatment should be provided each week. While principles of neuroplasticity endorse mass...
Article
Introduction: Communication skills training for people with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and their carers is recommended best practice. Delivery via telehealth could improve access to this training. This paper focuses on the acceptability of telehealth delivery of communication skills training. Methods: A mixed-methods investigation of acceptabi...
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Objectives: To evaluate the current evidence on communication partner training and its effectiveness on outcomes for people with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and/or their communication partners. Methods: Information sources: Systematic searches of 9 databases (AMED, CINAHL, EMBASE, Medline/EBSCOHOST, PsycINFO, PsycBITE, PsycARTICLES, PubMed, and...
Article
Background: Admission to the intensive care unit (ICU) with mechanical ventilation can lead to patients experiencing impaired swallowing and communication function. This can negatively affect patient experiences and outcomes. There is increasing research supporting early intervention for swallowing and communication; however, there are no publishe...
Article
Purpose The aim of the study was to investigate the effectiveness of social communication skills training (TBIconneCT) for people with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and their communication partners, delivered in-person or via telehealth, on quality of conversations. Method This study is a clinical trial, including an in-person intervention group (...
Article
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Background Digitally enabled rehabilitation may lead to better outcomes but has not been tested in large pragmatic trials. We aimed to evaluate a tailored prescription of affordable digital devices in addition to usual care for people with mobility limitations admitted to aged care and neurological rehabilitation. Methods and findings We conducted...
Article
Objective: To investigate the efficacy of telehealth-based and in-person social communication skills training (TBIconneCT) for people with moderate to severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) based on outcomes reported by the survivor and a close communication partner. Setting: Australia. Two telehealth dyads were located outside Australia. Particip...
Article
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Purpose: Rehabilitation professionals support people with traumatic brain injury (TBI) to return to meaningful participation in life and society – which now includes the use of social media. However, the role of health professionals in supporting the use of social media by adults with TBI is not yet known. This study aimed to investigate the experi...
Article
Primary Objective: To investigate the nature and patterns of narrative discourse impairment in people with severe Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) during early recovery. Methods and Procedures: A single image picture description task was administered to 42 participants with severe TBI at 3 and 6-months post-injury. The same task was administered to 37...
Article
Purpose Working with students with emotional behavioral disorders is a challenging area of speech-language pathology practice. In this study, we compare and profile the narrative discourse, structural language, and social communication characteristics of adolescents attending behavioral support and mainstream schools. We also examine relationships...
Article
Background: Evidence to guide training and support for aphasia group staff is limited, yet staff are integral to group efficacy. Aim: To explore experiences of staff involved in a 12-week interprofessional community aphasia group for people with severe chronic aphasia and their spouses. Methods & Procedures: A speech-language pathologist, social wo...
Article
Rationale The comparative efficacy and cost-effectiveness of constraint-induced and multi-modality aphasia therapy in chronic stroke are unknown. Aims and hypotheses In the COMPARE trial, we aim to determine whether Multi-Modal Aphasia Treatment (M-MAT) and Constraint-Induced Aphasia Therapy Plus (CIAT-Plus) are superior to usual care (UC) for chr...
Article
Purpose The interrelationship between psychosocial outcomes and discourse after severe traumatic brain injury remains largely unknown. This study examines outcomes relating to work, relationships, and independence within the context of discourse recovery across the 1st year post-injury. Method An inception cohort comprising 57 participants with se...
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Purpose: Interventions are often poorly described in published controlled trials, with relatively little information regarding intervention development, content and fidelity. This makes it difficult to conduct replication studies, interpret and compare findings across studies and for therapists to deliver the intervention in clinical practice. Comp...
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Background: Cognitive-communication disorders are common following an acquired brain injury (ABI). Remediation should involve individualized goal-setting, yet few reports describe the effectiveness of setting communication goals in a group setting. Aims: To describe a process for setting and achieving goals for people with ABI. Methods & proced...
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Aim of this study was to examine the Twitter experiences and networks of six adults with cognitive-communication disability after a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Method Using mixed methods, the study integrated: (a) quantitative analysis of Twitter networks using computational and manual coding of tweets; and (b) narrative analysis of in-depth int...
Article
Background: A previous clinical trial of training communication partners of people with traumatic brain injury (TBI) demonstrated positive outcomes [Togher, Power, McDonald, Tate, & Rietdijk (2009). Brain Impairment, 10(2), 188-204]. Adapting communication partner training for delivery via telehealth could improve access to this intervention. Objec...
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Purpose: To determine whether treatment was acceptable to participants and perceived as beneficial by exploring the experiences of people with cognitive communication difficulties following acquired brain injury who participated in a novel, group, communication, project-based treatment. The purpose of the treatment was to improve participants’ comm...
Article
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Introduction Treatment fidelity is a complex, multifaceted evaluative process which refers to whether a studied intervention was delivered as intended. Monitoring and enhancing fidelity is one recommendation of the TiDIER (Template for Intervention Description and Replication) checklist, as fidelity can inform interpretation and conclusions drawn a...
Article
There is substantial evidence that research studies reported in the scientific literature do not provide adequate information so that readers know exactly what was done and what was found. This problem has been addressed by the development of reporting guidelines which tell authors what should be reported and how it should be described. Many report...
Article
Background: This article recognises Professor Linda Worrall’s contribution to aphasiology and discusses research themes which have grown from her work. Aims: To review, summarise, and discuss literature relating to four themes which have emerged from the work of Professor Worrall: (1) Research capacity building; (2) Implementation of research evide...
Article
This pilot study investigates the outcomes of a group treatment approach for communication difficulties after Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). This programme, entitled INSIGHT, focuses on group interactions and is designed to manage the various behaviours and impulses that may manifest with this injury. Additionally, INSIGHT promotes natural and authe...
Article
Primary objective: To investigate whether the degree of participation by people with severe Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and the degree of support by their communication partners (CPs) changes in conversation during subacute recovery. Methods and procedures: Seventeen pairs of participants with TBI and their CPs were video-recorded during a 10 min...
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VIDEO ABSTRACT: https://doi.org/10.23641/asha.7646717 PURPOSE: Multimodal therapy is a frequent term in aphasia literature, but it has no agreed upon definition. Phrases such as “multimodal therapy” and “multimodal treatment” are applied to a range of aphasia interventions as if mutually understood, and yet, the interventions reported in the lit...
Article
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We developed a reporting guideline to provide authors with guidance about what should be reported when writing a paper for publication in a scientific journal using a particular type of research design: the single-case experimental design. This report describes the methods used to develop the single-case reporting guideline in behavioural intervent...
Article
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Background Communication impairments are common and pervasive for people a long time following acquired brain injury (ABI). These impairments have a significant impact on a person's quality of life (QOL) post‐injury. Project‐based treatment is a treatment approach that could have an impact on communication skills and QOL for people with ABI a long‐...
Article
Background: Community aphasia groups are recognized as an area of need and value for people with chronic aphasia and their significant others. However, our understanding of attendees’ experiences is limited by the small amount of qualitative research available. The present study aimed to describe participant experiences of an Interdisciplinary Comm...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this Twitter research, 6874 tweets of six adults with traumatic brain injury (TBI) were analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively using content classification [1], inductive coding of content themes, socio-linguistic analysis, and computational analysis in KH Coder. The results reflected that participants used Twitter for: (i) supporting others,...
Article
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There is growing interest in using telehealth to work with people with traumatic brain injury (TBI). This study investigated whether established rating scales for evaluating conversations of people with TBI are reliable for use over videoconferencing. Nineteen participants with TBI and their communication partners completed two conversation samples...
Article
Objectives: Although much is known about discourse impairment, little is known about discourse recovery after severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). This paper explores discourse recovery across the critical first year, controlling for pre-injury, injury and post-injury variables. Design and methods: An inception cohort comprising 57 participants...
Article
Objective: Cognitive-communication deficits after severe Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) may contribute to poor psychosocial functioning, however, the possible nature of this relationship remains unclear and warrants investigation. The current study explored the variance and correlations of a measure of cognitive-communication with a measure of psych...
Article
The notion of social cognition is an umbrella term which refers to a set of processes which permit the perception of social cues from the self and others, the interpretation and understanding of own and other’s emotions, beliefs and behaviors, and the generation of responses to these inferences to guide social behavior. This paper is an introductio...
Article
Primary objective: To investigate use of telehealth to deliver social communication skills training (TBIconneCT) to people with severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) and their communication partners (CPs). Research design: Feasibility study involving single case experimental design with two participants. Methods and procedures: TBI Express is an esta...
Article
Background: Social communication assessment after traumatic brain injury (TBI) remains a challenging area within speech-language pathology (SLP) clinical practice. Difficulties include the lack of TBI-specific standardized assessment instruments and limited knowledge and uptake of discourse assessment methods clinically. The aim of this paper was t...
Article
Psychosocial functioning is compromised following pediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI), with the past few decades witnessing a proliferation of research examining the effect of childhood brain insult on a range of psychosocial outcomes. This paper describes the systematic recommendation of outcome instruments to address psychosocial functioning f...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Background: Speech and language therapy (SLT) interventions for people with aphasia are complex-for example, interventions vary by delivery model (face-to-face, tele-rehabilitation), dynamic (group, 1-to-1) and provider. Therapists tailor the functional relevance and intervention difficulty to the individual's needs. Therapy regimes are planned at...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Background: Human communication is essentially multimodal however verbal approaches and techniques have traditionally dominated behavioural aphasia therapies. These verbal techniques are the hallmark of constraint-induced aphasia interventions (Rose, M. L. (2013). Releasing the constraints on aphasia therapy: The positive impact of gesture and mult...
Article
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Background Social media can support people with communication disability to access information, social participation and support. However, little is known about the experiences of people with traumatic brain injury (TBI) who use social media to determine their needs in relation to social media use. Aims To determine the views and experiences of ad...
Article
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Open Access: https://www.jmir.org/2018/5/e10229/ Background: The demand for an eHealth-ready and adaptable workforce is placing increasing pressure on universities to deliver eHealth education. At present, eHealth education is largely focused on components of eHealth rather than considering a curriculum-wide approach. Objective: This study aime...
Article
This article outlines an approach to student clinical education in the context of a group treatment model for individuals with traumatic brain injury (TBI). The authors provide background information on clinical training, communication difficulties, and group treatments commonly implemented for individuals with TBI. This is then followed by an over...
Article
Full-text available
Despite the shift towards collaborative healthcare and the increase in the use of eHealth technologies, there does not currently exist a model for the measurement of eHealth readiness in interdisciplinary healthcare teams. This research aims to address this gap in the literature through the development of a three phase methodology incorporating qua...
Article
Objectives: A tracheostomy tube can profoundly impact ability to communicate. The impact of this on patients' self-esteem and quality of life in the care continuum from the intensive care unit to after decannulation has not been reported. Therefore, the aim was to investigate the patient-reported experience regarding change in communication functi...