Drooling in Parkinson ’s Disease: Evidence of a Role for Divided Attention

This study assessed whether frequency of saliva swallows reduced, and drooling severity and frequency increased, when people with PD engaged in a cognitively distracting task. 18 patients with idiopathic PD reporting daytime dro oling on the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) were recruited. They completed the Radboud Oral Motor Inventory for PD saliva questionnaire and the Montreal Cognitive Assessment. UPDRS drooling score, disease stage, duration, gender, and age were recorded. Swallow frequency and drool ing severity and frequency were measured at rest and during a distracting computer-based language task. There was no significant difference between drooling severity at rest and during distraction (Wilcoxon signed rank testz = − 1.724,p = 0.085). There was a significant difference between at rest and distraction conditions for both drooling frequency (Wilcoxon signed rank testz = − 2.041,p = 0.041) and swallow frequency (Wilcoxon signed rank testz = − 3.054,p = 0.002). Participants swallowed less frequently and drooled more often during the distraction task. The frequency of saliva swallows and drooling are affected by divided attention in a dual-task paradigm. Further studies are needed to explore the exact role of attention in saliva management an d the clinical applications in assessment and treatment.
Source: Dysphagia - Category: Speech-Language Pathology Source Type: research

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