Definition: Dysphagia is any degree of difficulty chewing and swallowing food and drinking liquids. Dysphagia may result in aspiration pneumonia.
Etiology: Swallowing disorders may arise from several sources including Stroke, Laryngeal Cancer, Parkinson’s and other neurological disorders.
Coughing after consuming liquids or foods
Pain while swallowing
Pain post swallowing
Feeling/sensation something is stuck in your throat
Runny nose and eyes only during meals
Wet gurgle to one’s voice after swallowing
Assessment: SLPs use FEES/Fiberoptic Endoscopic Examination of Swallowing for evaluations and biofeedback.
Treatment: SLPs may use Vital Stim and compensatory strategies to improve swallowing skills.
Definition: Cognitive disorders present with problems in one’s ability to think without complications.
Etiology: Could arise from TBI, Stroke, CHI, Dementia, Developmental Delay and other disorders.
Orientation to person, place and time
Auditory processing disorders
Loss of Memory
Inability to express wants and needs
Inability to express thoughts and ideas
Inability following written and oral directions
Inability to understand and use figurative language
Assessment: Many assessments can be completed to analyze the patient’s deficits and abilities.
Intervention: Based on the deficits documented during the diagnostic assessment, goals and objectives can be devised for therapy to improve one’s cognitive abilities and improve one’s thinking skills in his or her everyday environment.
Definition: Speech disorders arise when one is unable to articulate words and or voice clearly.
ALS – Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
Vocal pathologies causing insufficient
breath support for speech
Developmental articulation disorders
Vocal fold pathologies
Assessment: Assessments provide information to document neurological deficits that are affecting clarity of speech. Some symptoms of speech disorders include the following:
Fluency: Stuttering or cluttering
Articulation: inability to produce sounds correctly
Voice: quality, pitch, and resonance
Intervention: Speech therapists utilize intervention strategies to improve clarity of speech. Some patients may require devices to produce a voice such as a Passy Muir Valve (PMV) 2001 to produce a voice post tracheostomy.
Blue Cross & Blue Shield
United Health Care
Tricare for Life and others