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Minerva Pediatrica 2017 October;69(5):396-402

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4946.16.04245-6


language: English

Swallowing dysfunction as a factor that should be remembered in recurrent pneumonia: videofluoroscopic swallow study

Nazan KAYMAZ 1 , Uğur ÖZÇELIK 2, Numan DEMIR 3, Güzin CINEL 2, Ebru YALÇIN 2, Deniz D. ERSÖZ 2, Nural KIPER 2

1 Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Canakkale Onsekiz Mart University, Çanakkale, Turkey; 2 Pulmology Unit, Department of Pediatrics, Hacettepe University Faculty of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey; 3 Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Hacettepe University, Faculty of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey


BACKGROUND: The swallow function is one of the strong defense mechanism against aspiration. Aspiration and pneumonia are unavoidable in patients with defective mechanism of swallowing. The aim of this study was to evaluate patients with recurrent pneumonia in terms of videofluoroscopic examination results.
METHODS: The study comprised fifty pediatric cases (22 boys, 28 girls) with an average age of 2.9 years (2 months-7.5 years) who were referred to our clinic due to suffering from recurrent pneumonia. The videofluoroscopic swallow study (VFSS) was performed on all patients. The presence of a correlation with pneumonia was investigated.
RESULTS: In 45 of the children, VFSS results were not normal. Of the children, 41 had mental-motor retardation. The results of the videofluoroscopic study show that silent aspiration was the most common pathology in participants with the percentage of 40 (27.5% mild, 17.5% severe). Patients in the study had pneumonia with an incidence of 2.6 illnesses per year. Having one than more results on VFSS was found to be associated with more number of annual pneumonia episodes.
CONCLUSIONS: Children with neurological impairments are at risk of recurrent acute pneumonia due to aspiration. Disturbances of swallowing phases should be remembered as a cause of pneumonia in these patients.

KEY WORDS: Deglutition disorders - Fluoroscopy - Pneumonia

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