Our speech-language pathologists evaluate communication problems as well as swallowing dysfunction. They design treatment plans relevant to each patient’s needs that may focus on:
- Comprehension skills for written and verbal communication;
- Verbal and nonverbal communication, including the use of augmentative systems when necessary;
- Cognitive status which may include memory, orientation and reasoning skills;
- Oral muscle strength and functioning for speaking and swallowing; and
- Swallowing skills and techniques, including the Modified Barium Swallow.
The modified barium swallow study (MBS) is procedure used to assess the nature and extent of an oropharyngeal swallow disorder. Barium is mixed with a variety of food and liquid consistencies. The studies are captured under fluoroscopy that allows for detailed analysis by the radiologist and the speech-language pathologist. Results of the MBS can aid in designing behavioral plans such as diet modifications or treatment to strengthen the swallow mechanism. Stormont-Vail is exclusive in offering this service to both adults and children in the community.
It is estimated that up to 15 million people in the United States have difficulty swallowing or suffer from a condition known as Dysphagia. Stroke victims and people with progressive neurological disorders are most likely to experience swallowing difficulty. Stormont-Vail Speech Therapy offers diagnostic testing, swallowing exercises, diet modifications and now a new approach called Vital Stim Therapy which involves delivery of a small current via electrodes to the front of the neck that stimulate inactive or atrophied swallowing muscles. The results can be improved quality of muscle contraction and improved swallow function. Vital Stim must be prescribed by a physician and can only be administered by a certified and experienced speech-language pathologist.
These are examples of some of the programs Speech Therapy offers. Services may require a physician’s referral. Please contact us at (785) 354-6116 for more information.