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Effectiveness of Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation on Post-Stroke Dysphagia: A Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials

Authors Alamer A, Melese H, Nigussie F

Received 23 May 2020

Accepted for publication 31 July 2020

Published 3 September 2020 Volume 2020:15 Pages 1521—1531


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Walker

Abayneh Alamer,1 Haimanot Melese,1 Fetene Nigussie2

1Department of Physiotherapy, School of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Mekelle University, Mekelle, Ethiopia; 2Department Of Nursing Institute of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, DebreBerhan University, Debre Berhan, Ethiopia

Correspondence: Abayneh Alamer
Mekelle University, Ethiopia
Tel +251922276256
Fax +251344416681/9

Abstract: The purpose of this review was to summarize the latest best scientific evidence on the efficacy of neuromuscular electrical stimulation on swallowing function in dysphagic stroke patients. A comprehensive systematic search of literature published between November 2014 and May 2020 was performed using the following electronic databases: PubMed/Medline, CINAHL, PEDro, Science Direct, Google Scholar, EMBASE, and Scopus. Only randomized controlled trials (RCT) evaluating the effect of neuromuscular electrical stimulation on swallowing function in dysphagic stroke patients were included. Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro) has been used to evaluate the risk of bias of included trials. This review was reported in accordance with PRISMA statement guideline. The methodological quality of the studies was determined using PEDro scale and GRADE approach. Evidence of overall quality was graded from moderate to high. Eleven RCTs involving 784 patients were analyzed. The primary outcome measures of this review were functional dysphagia scale (FDS) and standard swallowing assessment. This review found neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) coupled with traditional swallowing therapy could be an optional intervention to improve swallowing function after stroke in rehabilitation department.

Keywords: swallowing dysfunction, stroke, neuromuscular electrical stimulation; NMES, systematic review

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