Effects of Postural Change on Aspiration in Head and Neck Surgical Patients

Jeri A. Logemann*, Alfred W. Rademaker, Barbara Roa Pauloski, Peter J. Kahrilas

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

113 Scopus citations


This study was designed to define the effects of postural change on liquid aspiration during videofluorographic examination of oropharyngeal swallow in head and neck surgical patients. Thirty-two patients were given two swallows of five different amounts of liquid barium as tolerated. When aspiration occurred, the patient's head and/or body position was changed, new posture being determined by the swallowing disorder identified as the cause of the aspiration. Postural techniques were successful in eliminating aspiration on at least one volume of liquid in 81% of these patients. Patients in all surgical groups were able to use postures with equal success. A variety of positions were used in each type of surgical patient, indicating that these patients exhibited a variety of swallowing problems. Results emphasize the importance of introducing postural techniques during the radiographic study of oropharyngeal swallow to facilitate safe oral intake of liquids.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)222-227
Number of pages6
JournalOtolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1994


  • Aspiration
  • dysphagia
  • head and neck cancer
  • oropharyngeal swallow
  • videofluorographic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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