Dysphagia Services are offered individually on an outpatient basis or in combination with other treatments as part of the multi-therapy Rehabilitation Day Program. Occasionally, this program may begin while the patient is still a hospital inpatient.

Goal:

To evaluate the swallowing mechanism and determine appropriate compensatory and facilitation techniques. This is to ensure safe and efficient swallowing in an effort to promote adequate nutrition and hydration.

Patient Diagnoses:

Swallowing disorders, including those associated with neurological conditions, oropharyngeal pathologies, and extreme deconditioning. Most common medical diagnoses are stroke, Parkinson’s disease, ALS, brain tumors, head and neck cancers, cerebral palsy, and traumatic brain injury.

Patient Abilities:

A patient must:

  • Be medically stable
  • Have a support system of family or friends willing to participate in educational programs and follow recommendations.

Patient Participation and Care:

The clinical process begins with an evaluation of swallowing that includes attention to overall health and symptoms associated with eating and drinking. Diagnostic imaging may be needed for an exact biomechanical analysis of swallowing to identify compensatory strategies to eliminate inhaling foods or liquids, and to increase eating and drinking abilities. The social and emotional aspects of eating and drinking are incorporated into the treatment program.

Length of Program:

Duration of the program is usually short term, ranging from one visit to a few months.

Frequency of Sessions:

Patients are scheduled based on individual needs, ranging from daily to weekly.

Treatment Team:

Speech Pathologist, Physician, Radiologist, Dietitian, Respiratory Therapist, the Patient, and the Patient’s Caregiver.

Referral Requirements:

Physician referral is required.

Appointment Number:

For more information or assistance, please call 404-712-5527.