Ask-the-Expert: Speech, Language, and Swallowing with Myotonic Dystrophy


Originally presented on June 11th.

Do you have questions for DM doctors and therapists? Join Kiera Berggren, MA/CCC-SLP, MS of Virginia Commonwealth University for a “Ask-the-Expert” session on Speech, Language, and Swallowing with DM. After the success of the Stump-the-Doctor session at the 2020 Virtual MDF Conference, MDF has created a series using the same format to connect families and DM experts.

Kiera Berggren is a research speech-language pathologist (SLP) in the Department of Neurology at Virginia Commonwealth University. Prior to working as an SLP, she had trained as a chemist and worked as a research technician in several different labs. She started her second career as an SLP in rehabilitation following acquired neurological injuries such as stroke and traumatic brain injury. She quickly discovered a passion for working with individuals with neurodegenerative diseases and currently provides swallow, communication, and cognitive support to patients and families in multidisciplinary clinics for ALS and the MDA. Marrying her current career and her research background has allowed her to also be active in research in several neuromuscular diseases including myotonic dystrophy, FSHD, ALS, and others where she has been looking at orofacial strength, swallow function, and changes in speech. Click here to learn more about Kiera Berggren and her work at VCU.

Learn more about SLP guidelines with the Care Guidelines for Speech and Language Pathologists Treating Adults and Children with Myotonic Dystrophy. This guide, co-authored by Kiera Berggren, includes information on assessment, diagnosis, and therapy for speech, swallowing and language needs related to DM.

Click here to find all our upcoming “Ask-the-Expert” question sessions!