Novel mealtime duration measures: Reliability and preliminary associations with clinical feeding and swallowing performance in self-feeding children with cerebral palsy

Avinash Mishra, Justine J. Sheppard, Cagla Kantarcigil, Andrew M. Gordon, Georgia A. Malandraki*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to examine (a) the reliability of newly developed measures of mealtime duration and (b) their relationship to clinical feeding/swallowing performance in children with spastic cerebral palsy (SCP). Method: Seventeen self-feeding children (9 boys, 8 girls) with SCP (age range = 5;1 [years;months] to 17;6, Gross Motor Function Classification System range = I–IV) were assessed during mealtimes using the Dysphagia Disorder Survey (DDS; Sheppard, Hochman, & Baer, 2014). Children were divided into 2 groups, children with primarily unilateral or bilateral brain involvement. Duration measures included mealtime duration and total sip/bite duration for each bolus type (liquid and solid). Results: Excellent intra- and inter-rater reliability for all duration measures was observed (intraclass correlation coefficient [ICC] = 1.00 and 0.955, respectively, for mealtime duration; ICC = 1.00 and 0.963, respectively, for solid/bite duration; ICC = 1.00 and 0.957, respectively, for liquid/sip duration). Positive correlations were found between total mealtime duration and DDS Part 1, rs =. 514 [.045–.797], p =. 035; Part 2, rs =. 528 [.064–.804], p =. 029; and total scores, rs =. 665 [.271–.868], p =. 004, and between total solid/bite duration and DDS Part 1, rs =. 579 [.137–.828], p =. 015; Part 2, rs =. 620 [.199–.847], p =. 007; and total scores, rs =.762 [.444–.909], p <. 001. Children with unilateral brain involvement exhibited significantly lower DDS total (p =. 049) and Part 2 scores (p =. 026), indicating better feeding/swallowing performance/skills. They also had shorter mealtime duration (p =. 019) and solid/bite duration (p =. 025) compared with children with bilateral involvement. Conclusions: Our new mealtime duration measures are reliable and correlate with feeding/swallowing performance in a sample of self-feeding children with SCP. Therefore, they may be useful supplements to feeding/swallowing assessments for this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-107
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of speech-language pathology
Volume27
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2018
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Speech and Hearing

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