The Challenges of Dysphagia Management and Rehabilitation After Extensive Thermal Burn Injury: A Complex Case
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The role of the speech pathologist in the burns population is still emerging, with detailed discussion of the assessment and management of dysphagia limited to date. This report describes the case of a 60-year-old man who developed severe contractures of the head and neck and oropharyngeal dysphagia after sustaining 53.5% deep partial- and full-thickness burns. Although some aspects of rehabilitation were confounded by a preexisting mild intellectual disability, the patient was able to participate in an intensive regimen of active and passive exercise to rehabilitate his oropharyngeal dysphagia. Significant oral contractures remained; however, the patient was discharged without tracheostomy and consuming a texture-modified diet with no signs of aspiration. To our knowledge, this is one of a small handful of reports that document speech pathology management of the burns population, and a first that identifies and outlines specific characteristics of, and rehabilitation strategies for, dysphagia in a burned individual.
Journal of Burn Care & Research
Clinical Sciences not elsewhere classified