Presentation characteristics and management of dypshagia in patients with Ludwig’s Angina

Ward, Elizabeth, Christiansen, Sonja, Denny, Victoria, Harris, Erin, Cheng, Leisa and Crombie, Anthony (2011) Presentation characteristics and management of dypshagia in patients with Ludwig’s Angina. Journal of Medical Speech Language Pathology, 19 2: 1-10.

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Author Ward, Elizabeth
Christiansen, Sonja
Denny, Victoria
Harris, Erin
Cheng, Leisa
Crombie, Anthony
Title Presentation characteristics and management of dypshagia in patients with Ludwig’s Angina
Journal name Journal of Medical Speech Language Pathology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1065-1438
Publication date 2011-06
Sub-type Article (original research)
Volume 19
Issue 2
Start page 1
End page 10
Total pages 10
Place of publication Florence, KY, United States
Publisher Delmar Cengage Learning
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Abstract Ludwig's angina is a rare clinical condition characterized by bilateral swelling of the sublingual and submandibular spaces. Although dysphagia is reported to occur in 44% to 83% of patients with this condition, there are no reports in the literature describing the nature of the dysphagia or its management. Therefore, the aim of this study was to provide descriptive information regarding the presentation and characteristics of dysphagia in this clinical population. A retrospective chart audit of 26 patients with Ludwig's angina revealed that speech pathology was involved with only 42% of patients, specifically those patients with more severe infection. Dysphagia severity at initial assessment revealed mild to severe impairments, with 36% of patients placed nil per os at their first assessment. Patients present with opharyngeal dysphagia caused by extensive edema, impacting on bolus control, mastication, bolus transit, and airway protection. The presence of a tracheostomy tube had further negative impact on swallowing for some individuals. Management involved repeated clinical swallow assessments and compensatory management techniques to maximize swallow safety and comfort. Recovery is rapid, although the majority of patients are discharged on modified food textures because of residual swelling. The current data provide the first descriptive information on dysphagia and its management in patients with this rare clinical condition.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences Publications
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Created: Thu, 13 Oct 2011, 10:26:52 EST by Professor Elizabeth Ward on behalf of School of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences