nav
contact
  • Speech Pathology
  • Appointments

    336-716-3103

  • Additional Information

    We accept referrals from parents, physician offices, behavioral health programs and local school programs. In-house (inpatient) patients are seen upon physician consult. Appointments for outpatient testing are scheduled throughout the week in a variety of time slots.



Feeding and Swallowing Disorder (Dysphagia) Evaluation

Our speech-language pathologists specialize in treating children with feeding and swallowing disorders. We assess dysphagia by examining the mouth and throat muscles and aspiration risk, or the entry of food or liquid into the airway. During an evaluation, we may:

  • Ask questions about your child's medical history, development and symptoms
  • Look at the strength and movement of the muscles involved in swallowing
  • Evaluate overall oral-motor skills, oral sensory awareness and swallowing safety
  • Observe feeding to see your child's posture, behavior and oral movements during eating and drinking
  • Perform special tests to evaluate swallowing

These tests provide information on the swallowing muscles, how food and liquid are swallowed, and if aspiration occurs. They may include:

Clinical Swallow Evaluation (CSE)                                                                             Clinical Swallow Evaluation_125px

During this non-invasive swallowing evaluation, a speech-language pathologist looks at the movements of the mouth and face and assesses breathing and saliva management. The child is given various food and liquids so that chewing and swallowing can be observed.

Flexible Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing (FEES)                             FEES_125px

A small endoscope is gently placed along the floor of the nose to the back of the child's throat to visualize the throat from above while swallowing. Various foods and liquids are administered and often dyed with food coloring to allow for greater visualization.

Modified Barium Swallow Study (MBS) or Pharyngeal Function Study         Dacia M-pediatric PFS_125px

The MBS is a video x-ray of the swallowing process. The study enables the speech-language pathologist to see what is happening inside your child's mouth and throat. It can show if food or liquid is going into the airway instead of the stomach, which is called aspiration. It can also help identify which parts of the mouth and throat are not working well. The MBS is performed in the radiology department in conjunction with a radiology technician. During the exam, the child is placed in a typical feeding position and given a variety of food consistencies (thin liquid, thick liquid, puree, and/or solid) that are appropriate based on age and developmental level. Barium is added to the food or liquid so that it can be seen as it moves in your child's mouth and throat. Barium is not dangerous for babies or young children. However, you may see it in the baby's diaper for a few days after the study. As a parent or caregiver, you may be asked to feed your child during the study. You will be given a lead vest as protection from the x-rays. The x-ray machine is only turned on while your child is swallowing in order to limit the amount of overall radiation.

Test results are discussed with families at the end of the evaluation, and recommendations are made regarding safe and efficient eating and drinking. They may include: removing certain food items, changing the thickness of liquids consumed, altering the child's bottle, nipple, or utensils, and/or specific feeding techniques.

Instructions for Caregivers Before the Swallowing Test

We ask that infants and children do not eat approximately 3 hours prior to their evaluation so that they will be hungry and willing to eat for the evaluation. Please bring a variety of food choices that your child typically eats, including food and liquids. Please bring any certain types of food or drink that your child has difficulty with too. If the child is an infant, bring at least 4 ounces of formula or breast milk.

  • Speech Pathology
  • Appointments

    336-716-3103

  • Additional Information

    We accept referrals from parents, physician offices, behavioral health programs and local school programs. In-house (inpatient) patients are seen upon physician consult. Appointments for outpatient testing are scheduled throughout the week in a variety of time slots.