Ms. Wendy Johannsen, Stollery Children’s Hospital, Edmonton, AB

This session will explain the difference between a feeding and a swallowing disorder and provide an overview of the indicators for possible swallowing dysfunction. The standard practice includes completing a clinical feeding and swallowing assessment with discussion as to why a clinical assessment alone may not be sufficient in identifying a possible swallowing dysfunction. The indicators for further instrumental assessment will be outlined. The best way to assess aspiration is by doing an instrumental assessment. The Videofluoroscopic Swallow Study (VFSS) and the Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of the Swallow (FEES) are two main ways for objectively assessing the swallow. The strengths and limitations of each with be reviewed.

Learning Objectives
At the end of this presentation, attendees will be able to:

  • Identify the signs and symptoms of possible swallowing dysfunction;
  • Understand the standards of management, the limitations of a clinical assessment and the indications for instrumental assessment; and
  • Recognize the advantages and limitations of the Videofluoroscopic Swallow Study (VFSS) vs. the Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of the Swallow (FEES).