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Periventricular White Matter Lesions as a Prognostic Factor of Swallowing Function in Older Patients with Mild Stroke

AbstractOlder patients with stroke have poor functional prognosis compared to younger patients. Patients with stroke who have severe white matter (WM) lesions have been reported to have poor functional prognosis such as cognitive dysfunction, increased propensity for falling, and gait and balance problems. The aim of this study was to determine whether WM lesions exert negative effects on swallowing function in older patients with mild stroke. We conducted a retrospective analysis of 63 patients aged  >65  years who had a National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score ≤5 and who underwent videofluoroscopic swallowing examination after their first stroke. Linear regression analysis showed that oral transit time tended to increase as Fazekas grade increased (p = 0.003). In addition, inadequate mastication was related to the presence of lesions in the left hemisphere (p = 0.039). The presence of penetration could also be predicted by Fazekas grade (p = 0.015). Our findings suggest that WM lesions observed in brain magnetic resonance imaging scans can impact swallowing problems in older patients with mild stroke, regardless of initial stroke severity or other factors associated with lesion location. Accordingly, our data indicate that WM lesio ns are a predictive factor by which patients can be stratified into favorable or unfavorable outcomes with respect to dysphagia.
Source: Dysphagia - Category: Speech Therapy Source Type: research

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