Speech Therapy Intervention in a Patient with Poststroke Dysphagia
Introduction: Stroke is a neurological deficit in a cerebral area secondary to a vascular lesion. One of the most frequent sequels is dysphagia, being recognized as one of the main risk factor for the occurrence of aspiration pneumonia, hence the need of early detection and appropriate treatment, especially after hospital discharge.
Objectives: Report speech therapy intervention in a bedridden female elderly patient with poststroke dysphagia, inserted in a community health care service.
Resumed Report: Female patient aged 68 years being attended at home. The family doctor of her basic health unit referred her to speech therapy evaluation to investigate swallowing and speech disorders. She presented slowed speech, unsteady voice, and feeding difficulties, eating all three consistencies. Assessments findings were tongue mobility alterations, voice disorders, slow swallowing, and presented cough in solid consistency foods, without changes in cervical auscultation in all consistencies. According to the results, the findings are suggestive of mild dysphagia with low risk of aspiration. Aiming to improve the quality of the patient’s feeding, a guidance to caregivers and speech therapy were planned according to the findings of the evaluations.
Conclusion: Questions regarding dysphagia and safe eating were clarified, and we taught and applied exercises and maneuvers to promote best quality meals. After 2 months in speech therapy monitoring, she reported decreased number of cough and choking episodes, less time-consuming meals and communication improvement. We emphasize the importance of primary care in pursuit of life quality for these patients.
Keywords: Stroke, speech, language and hearing sciences, deglutition disorders.