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Swallow Event Sequencing: Comparing Healthy Older and Younger Adults

AbstractPrevious research has established that a great deal of variation exists in the temporal sequence of swallowing events for healthy adults. Yet, the impact of aging on swallow event sequence is not well understood. Kendall et al. (Dysphagia 18(2):85 –91,2003) suggested there are 4 obligatory paired-event sequences in swallowing. We directly compared adherence to these sequences, as well as event latencies, and quantified the percentage of unique sequences in two samples of healthy adults: young (  65). The 8 swallowing events that contribute to the sequences were reliably identified from videofluoroscopy in a sample of 23 healthy seniors (10 male, mean age 74.7) and 20 healthy young adults (10 male, mean age 31.5) with no evidence of penetration–aspiration or post-swallow residue. Chi-sq uare analyses compared the proportions of obligatory pairs and unique sequences by age group. Compared to the older subjects, younger subjects had significantly lower adherence to two obligatory sequences: Upper Esophageal Sphincter (UES) opening occurs before (or simultaneous with) the bolus arrivi ng at the UES and UES maximum distention occurs before maximum pharyngeal constriction. The associated latencies were significantly different between age groups as well. Further, significantly fewer unique swallow sequences were observed in the older group (61%) compared with the young (82%) (χ2 = 31.8;p 
Source: Dysphagia - Category: Speech-Language Pathology Source Type: research

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