- Paper Report
- Open Access
Swallowing changes following intubation
- Adrian Mellor1
© Current Science Ltd 2000
- Published: 31 May 2000
- endotracheal intubation
Aspiration is an important and frequent occurrence after a period of intubation. Previous studies put the incidence at 45%, frequently without any symptoms. Little work has been done to elucidate whether these patients have a specific swallowing problem or whether many different mechanisms are operating.
Twenty-one patients were studied. All these patients had symptomatic swallowing dysfunction.
Range of length of intubation was 11-44 days (mean 24.6).
13 had had tracheostomy at some time (still in situ in two patients).
Videofluoroscopy was performed by three experienced radiologists with the patient seated.
Aspiration was identified if contrast appeared below the glottis
Eighteen patients (86%) aspirated. There were 11 combinations of aspiration pattern identified. Six follow-up videofluoroscopic examinations were performed following swallowing therapy, four showed no aspiration.