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Swallowing Disorders

The ability to eat and swallow is one of the most basic things we take for granted in daily life. In spite of its ordinary nature, swallowing food and liquid is actually an incredibly complex activity that requires coordination of many sets of muscles. Dysfunction with any part of the swallowing mechanism can lead to significant reduction in the quality of a person's daily life.

Do you have any of the following problems?

  • Choking

  • Aspiration (food/liquid goes the "wrong way")

  • Food feels like it gets stuck

  • Regurgitation

  • Weight loss or diet change due to difficulty swallowing

If so, you may need evaluation by an ear, nose, and throat specialist (ENT) as well as a speech language pathologist to determine the root cause of your swallowing disorder. Evaluation can be done by endoscopic evaluation of the structures in the throat, as well as by a special X-ray study, known as a Modified Barium Swallow:

This non-invasive study allows clinicians to accurately diagnose the area causing swallowing dysfunction. Targeted therapeutic exercises, or in select cases, surgical interventions, can help improve symptoms.

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