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Dysphagia In Multiple Sclerosis Patients: Diagnostic And Evaluation Strategies

Authors Ansari NN, Tarameshlu M, Ghelichi L

Received 13 August 2019

Accepted for publication 18 October 2019

Published 26 March 2020 Volume 2020:10 Pages 15—28


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Prof. Dr. Thomas Müller

Noureddin Nakhostin Ansari,1–3 Maryam Tarameshlu,4 Leila Ghelichi4

1Department of Physiotherapy, School of Rehabilitation, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran; 2Sports Medicine Research Center, Neuroscience Institute, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran; 3Neuromusculoskeletal Research Center, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran; 4Department of Speech and Language Pathology, Rehabilitation Research Center, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

Correspondence: Noureddin Nakhostin Ansari
Department of Physiotherapy, School of Rehabilitation, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Enghelab Ave, Pich-E-Shemiran, Tehran 11489, Iran
Tel +98 21 77533939
Fax +98 21 77727009

Abstract: Dysphagia after multiple sclerosis (MS) is a common disabling symptom which can lead to serious complications. Regular screening and assessment of dysphagia in patients with MS are important. Using valid and reliable instruments to measure dysphagia in MS patients is a crucial component in clinical practice and of research quality. There are various strategies to diagnose and assess the dysphagia in patients with MS. Screening strategies are for early diagnosis of the dysphagia. Clinical, non-instrumental strategies are used to verify the presence and to determine the severity and cause of dysphagia. Instrumental strategies are complementary to clinical examination to provide objective data on the various aspects of swallowing dysfunctions. This review revealed a few validated tools for dysphagia assessment in MS. The Dysphagia in Multiple Sclerosis Questionnaire (DYMUS) and the Mann Assessment of Swallowing Ability (MASA) are the only validated MS-specific dysphagia tools. Further development of valid and reliable MS-specific screening and assessment tools that can be administered rapidly and scored easily to detect dysphagia and evaluate clinical outcomes in adults with MS is imperative. Until then, validation and metric evaluation of the screening and assessment tools currently available are required.

Keywords: multiple sclerosis, diagnosis, dysphagia, screening strategy, assessment strategy, outcome measure

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