Aspirating and Nonaspirating Swallow Sounds in Children: A Pilot Study

Thuy Frakking, Anne Chang, Kerry-Ann O'Grady, Michael David, Kelly Weir

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    Background: Cervical auscultation (CA) may be used to complement feeding/swallowing evaluations when assessing for aspiration. There are no published pediatric studies that compare the properties of sounds between aspirating and nonaspirating swallows.

    Aim: To establish acoustic and perceptual profiles of aspirating and nonaspirating swallow sounds and determine if a difference exists between these 2 swallowing types.

    Methods: Aspiration sound clips were obtained from recordings using CA simultaneously undertaken with videofluoroscopic swallow study. Aspiration was determined using the Penetration-Aspiration Scale. The presence of perceptual swallow/breath parameters was rated by 2 speech pathologists who were blinded to the type of swallow. Acoustic data between groups were compared using Mann Whitney U-tests, while perceptual differences were determined by a test of 2 proportions. Combinations of perceptual parameters of 50 swallows (27 aspiration, 23 no aspiration) from 47 children (57% male) were statistically analyzed using area under a receiver operating characteristic (aROC), sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values to determine predictors of aspirating swallows.

    Results: The combination of post-swallow presence of wet breathing and wheeze and absence of GRS and normal breathing was the best predictor of aspiration (aROC = 0.82, 95% CI, 0.70-0.94). There were no significant differences between these 2 swallow types for peak frequency, duration, and peak amplitude.

    Conclusion: Our pilot study has shown that certain characteristics of swallow obtained using CA may be useful in the prediction of aspiration. However, further research comparing the acoustic swallowing sound profiles of normal children to children with dysphagia (who are aspirating) on a larger scale is required.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1001-1009
    Number of pages9
    JournalAnnals of Otology, Rhinology and Laryngology
    Volume125
    Issue number12
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2016

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