Dysphagia Program

Piedmont Athens Regional's interdisciplinary Dysphagia Program effectively diagnoses and treats swallowing disorders in both adults and children. The team may include physicians, radiologists, speech pathologists, occupational therapists, nurses and dietitians.

Dysphagia Treatment

Dysphagia treatment can benefit those with swallowing problems caused by neurological diagnosis, progressive diseases and head/neck cancers. The specially-trained speech language pathologists use diagnostic and treatment procedures including a Modified Barium Swallow (MBS) in Radiology, diet modifications, and exercise programs to aid improved swallowing function.

A technique called Vital Stim is also offered for appropriate conditions. It helps stimulate weak muscles involved in swallowing.

Adults may be seen while in the hospital or as an outpatient. The swallow study is performed in the main hospital building.

Feeding or Swallowing Difficulty for Children

Some children have difficulty feeding or swallowing while breastfeeding, bottle-feeding, spoon-feeding or self-feeding. These children may not be able to eat age-appropriate textures or types of food. Our Pediatric Feeding Team -- made up of an Occupational Therapist and Speech/Language Pathologist -- provide a comprehensive evaluation to identify barriers that interfere with the child's feeding skills. The therapist may also complete an Oral Pharyngeal Motility Study (OPMS) in Radiology.

After the evaluation is completed, parent education and a home program are provided. Recommendations are made regarding a treatment program and follow-up medical care if needed.

Contact Us

For more information about our Dysphagia Program, email us or call 706-475-3511.