Speech and Communication: Dysphagia Program
Weakness in mouth and throat muscles, resulting from stroke, spinal cord or brain injury, neuromuscular disorders or cancer, can cause dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing. If you have a swallowing disorder, Good Shepherd’s Dysphagia Program can help.
Good Shepherd’s Master’s level speech and language pathologists implement the Dysphagia Program with expert hands-on care and state-of-the-art technology. The program is a component of our integrated approach to rehabilitation.
Levels of care:
- Treatment for dysphagia is available at Good Shepherd's four inpatient rehabilitation locations and one long-term acute care location.
- Good Shepherd offers numerous outpatient rehabilitation facilities to continue your progress and help you maintain your function.
- If you can't make it to one of Good Shepherd's outpatient locations, we provide in-home therapy services throughout our service area.
- Dysphagia therapy for children is availabile through Good Shepherd's Transitions Feeding Program and outpatient pediatric rehabilitation.
- Good Shepherd’s two long-term care facilities offer services for speech. language and swallowing disorders.
Good Shepherd’s Dysphagia Program includes:
- You will undergo a comprehensive evaluation before a treatment plan is developed.
- Modified Barium Swallow (MBS) studies, where you consume various textures of food or liquid while an X-ray shows how the structures in your mouth and throat are functioning, are available. MBS Studies for children are provided in Good Shepherd's Pediatrics Program.
- Leading-edge VitalStim® Therapy uses the concept of neuromuscular re-education to retrain throat muscles in adults who have chronic oral/pharyngeal dysphagia. The therapists in Good Shepherd’s Speech and Communication Program were early adopters of VitalStim Therapy and have presented research findings related to VitalStim Therapy nationally.
- Our therapists use the state-of-the-art VitalStim Experia, which provides neuromuscular re-education, surface EMG and biofeedback during treatment sessions.
- Oral/facial electrical stimulation is used to restore muscle function within the face and mouth.
- Deep Pharyngeal Neuromuscular Stimulation (DPNS) is used to restore reflexes within the pharynx.
- A therapeutic exercise program is available.
- Recommendations regarding modified diet levels are available.
- Therapists will work with you to develop strategies for compensating for and overcoming dysphagia.
- Ongoing patient and family education is available.
Good Shepherd Dysphagia Program specialties:
- Physical medicine and rehabilitation
- Nutritional counseling
- Occupational therapy
- Rehabilitation nursing
- Respiratory therapy
For more information on the Good Shepherd Department of Speech and Communication, contact us, call 610-776-3270 or Request an Appointment.