Dysphagia in psychiatric patients: clinical and videofluoroscopic study
Department of Psychiatry
Adult; Aged; Airway Obstruction; Deglutition Disorders; Female; Fluoroscopy; Humans; Inpatients; Male; Mental Disorders; Middle Aged; Videotape Recording
Deaths due to airway obstruction are more common in psychiatric inpatients than in the normal population. A dysphagia program was started in a 400 bed Massachusetts psychiatric hospital after 4 patients in 1 year died from asphyxia. In the year after the program was started, there were no deaths; however, 28 patients experienced 32 choking incidents. The 28 patients received clinical evaluations by speech pathologists, neurologists, psychiatrists, and internists. Of the incidents, 55% required use of the Heimlich maneuver to open the airway. Choking incidents could be classified into five types based on results of clinical examination: bradykinetic, dyskinetic, fast eating syndrome, paralytic, and medical. Twenty-one of the 28 patients were studied by videofluoroscopy and 86% of the videos were abnormal, showing aspiration in eight, webs in five, and delay in the oral phase in five. Patients with bradykinetic dysphagia (secondary to neuroleptic-induced extra-pyramidal syndrome [EPS]) and paralytic dysphagia appeared to experience a more severe form of choking.
Bazemore PH, Tonkonogy J, Ananth R. (1991). Dysphagia in psychiatric patients: clinical and videofluoroscopic study. Psychiatry Publications and Presentations. Retrieved from https://escholarship.umassmed.edu/psych_pp/1