Semin Speech Lang 2007; 28(3): 161-165
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-984722
Copyright © 2007 by Thieme Medical Publishers, Inc., 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

Pediatric Feeding and Swallowing Disorders: State of Health, Population Trends, and Application of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health

Maureen A. Lefton-Greif1 , Joan C. Arvedson2
  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Eudowood Division of Pediatric Respiratory Sciences, The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 2Children's Hospital of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and Medical College of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
23 July 2007 (online)


Over the past two decades, the definition of the state of health has been expanded from a disease-based condition to one that includes the impact of the disease on an individual's ability to function. The World Health Organization identified the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF) as a potential framework for coding functional status and establishing a common, standardized language to describe and study health and health-related domains. The ICF could have significant benefits for speech-language pathologists working with children with feeding and swallowing problems. In this article, the authors describe the changes in the definition of health and justification for the ICF, review population trends relevant to pediatric feeding and swallowing disorders, and summarize potential applications of the ICF.


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Maureen A Lefton-GreifPh.D. CCC-SLP BRS-S 

The David M. Rubenstein Child Health Building, Eudowood Division of Pediatric Respiratory Sciences

Room 3017, 200 N. Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21287