dysphagia

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dysphagia

 [dis-fa´jah]
difficulty in swallowing; see also aphagia. There are numerous underlying causes, including stroke and other neurologic conditions, local trauma and muscle damage, and a tumor or swelling that partially obstructs the passage of food. The condition can range from mild discomfort, such as a feeling that there is a lump in the throat, to a severe inability to control the muscles needed for chewing and swallowing.

Dysphagia can seriously compromise the nutritional status of a patient. Temporary measures such as tube feeding and parenteral nutrition can remedy the immediate problem, but long-term goals for rehabilitation must focus on helping the patient recover the ability to swallow sufficient amounts of food and drink to assure adequate nutrition.

Measures intended to accomplish the goal of oral feeding are implemented only after determining the particular techniques that are most helpful for the individual patient. In general, placing the patient in an upright position, providing a pleasant and calm environment, being sure the lips are closed as the patient begins to swallow, and preparing and serving foods of the proper consistency are all helpful techniques. Stroke victims who have difficulty swallowing should be turned, or should turn their heads, to the unaffected side to facilitate swallowing. If dry mouth is a problem, there are artificial salivas available to moisten and lubricate the mouth. When drinking fluids, dysphagic patients should sip the liquid in small amounts.
esophageal dysphagia dysphagia caused by an abnormality in the esophagus, such as a smooth muscle disorder that interferes with peristalsis or an obstruction from external compression or a stricture.
oropharyngeal dysphagia dysphagia caused by difficulty in initiating the swallowing process, so that solids and liquids cannot move out of the mouth properly.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.

dys·pha·gi·a

, dysphagy (dis-fā'jē-ă, dis'fă-jē),
Difficulty in swallowing.
See also: aglutition.
[dys- + G. phagō, to eat]
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012

dysphagia

(dĭs-fā′jə, -jē-ə)
n.
Difficulty in swallowing.

dys·phag′ic (-făj′ĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

dysphagia

Internal medicine Difficulty or inability to swallow, a finding that may indicate a brainstem tumor. See Malignant dysphagia. Cf Deglutition.
McGraw-Hill Concise Dictionary of Modern Medicine. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

dys·pha·gi·a

, dysphagy (dis-fā'jē-ă, dis'fă-jē)
Difficulty in swallowing.
Synonym(s): aglutition.
[dys- + G. phagō, to eat]
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012

dysphagia

Difficulty in swallowing. See also PHARYNGEAL POUCH, ACHALASIA and GLOBUS HYSTERICUS.
Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005

Dysphagia

Medical term for any difficulty, discomfort or pain when swallowing
Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

dys·pha·gi·a

, dysphagy (dis-fā'jē-ă, dis'fă-jē)
Difficulty in swallowing.
Synonym(s): aglutition.
[dys- + G. phagō, to eat]
Medical Dictionary for the Dental Professions © Farlex 2012

Patient discussion about dysphagia

Q. mouth ulcer and difficulty to swallow, below right side of inner tongue guggle salt water and vinigar dose'nt help

A. how big is it? mouth ulcers has a reason why they happen. sometimes a broken tooth, biting a sharp metal, a prosthetic that doesn't sit well..that sort of things. but sometimes it is caused by other stuff. any way, oral hygiene may relieve some of the symptoms. Topical (rubbed on) antihistamines, antacids, corticosteroids, or other soothing preparations may be recommended for applying on top of the ulcer. Avoid hot or spicy foods.

More discussions about dysphagia
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References in periodicals archive ?
A DIFFICULTY in swallowing which persists for more than a few days should be properly looked into.
Difficulty in Swallowing Can Be a Matter of Changing Eating Habits or Cause for Serious Concern
Difficulty in swallowing (dysphagia) is common among all age groups, especially the elderly.
The treatment's long-term effects remain unknown and require further study However, Duvoisin says, since the immediate and localized side effects of Type A toxin (such as drooping of the upper eyelid or difficulty in swallowing) are transitory, treatable and rarely serious when the toxin is properly administered, botulinum therapy appears safe and "relatively easy"
The patient was admitted to an emergency room with hallucinations, difficulty in swallowing, and generalized weakness, and rabies was considered in the differential diagnosis; 3 days later the patient became comatose.