Commentary: A “Real World” Focus on Dysphagia Intervention in the Schools Last year in Rhode Island, a high school student (we’ll refer to him as Jimmy) was referred to a medical speech-language pathologist by the school speech-language pathologist for a clinical evaluation and swallow study. Jimmy attended classes in a self-contained classroom and was fed meals and snacks by school ... Article
Article  |   June 01, 2001
Commentary: A “Real World” Focus on Dysphagia Intervention in the Schools
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • DeAnne Wellman Owre
    ASHA Special Interest Division 16, School-Based Issues
Article Information
Commentary
Article   |   June 01, 2001
Commentary: A “Real World” Focus on Dysphagia Intervention in the Schools
SIG 13 Perspectives on Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia), June 2001, Vol. 10, 13-15. doi:10.1044/sasd10.2.13
SIG 13 Perspectives on Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia), June 2001, Vol. 10, 13-15. doi:10.1044/sasd10.2.13
Last year in Rhode Island, a high school student (we’ll refer to him as Jimmy) was referred to a medical speech-language pathologist by the school speech-language pathologist for a clinical evaluation and swallow study. Jimmy attended classes in a self-contained classroom and was fed meals and snacks by school staff. It was during those sessions that the school speech-language pathologist observed possible symptoms of dysphagia. Jimmy was also experiencing repeated bouts of aspiration pneumonia resulting in multiple hospitalizations. Days were spent recovering while absent from his classroom. Following his clinical evaluation and subsequent modified barium swallow (MBS) study, Jimmy was diagnosed with moderate-severe oral and pharyngeal dysphagia. In coordination with the medical speech-language pathologist, the school-based speech-language pathologist followed through with recommendations which included implementing modifications and feeding strategies in the classroom. School staff and parents were inserviced using the actual MBS video. As a result of the initial referral and subsequent intervention by the school-based speech-language pathologist, Jimmy’s mealtimes appeared significantly more enjoyable with reduced struggling behaviors of dysphagia, bouts of aspiration pneumonia were eliminated, school attendance improved by a least 25%, and Jimmy gained much needed weight.
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