Management of Swallowing Difficulty in Pharyngeal Diseases
Authors: Byung-Mo Oh and Nam-Jong Paik
Abstract: In order to prevent repetitive subglottic aspiration or suffocation, coordination of the pharyngeal movement is critical in the swallowing process. However, diverse diseases can cause difficulties in the neuromuscular coordination of the pharynx. Thorough attention to patients' history and careful investigation of the pathophysiology are important in treating the swallowing difficulty. Also, it is mandatory to precisely assess the patient's pathological state with the aid of videofluoroscopic swallowing studies, currently accepted as the standard diagnostic test, and to prescribe adequate treatment based on the test results. Although the clinical trial-based evidence is not sufficient, a satisfactory functional outcome can be achieved in many patients through individually tailored rehabilitation strategies. The purpose of this chapter is to introduce the videofluoroscopic swallowing study, as a standard method for the diagnosis of pharyngeal diseases and to describe the basic principles and approaches of the treatment for pharyngeal dysphagia
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