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Strength-Training Exercise in Dysphagia Rehabilitation: Principles, Procedures, and Directions for Future Research


Dysphagia rehabilitation, historically, has focused a great deal on various compensations during swallowing to prevent aspiration and/or improve safety and efficiency. Exercise, in general, has been a part of the dysphagia rehabilitation landscape. However, heightened discussions in the field regarding best practices for exercise training, particularly strengthening, raise more questions than answers. The intent of this paper is to (1) explore the overriding principles of neuromuscular plasticity with regard to strength training, (2) evaluate how current exercise-training interventions in dysphagia rehabilitation correspond to these principles, and (3) postulate directions for future study of normal and disordered swallowing and determine how to incorporate these principles into dysphagia rehabilitation.

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Correspondence to Lori M. Burkhead PhD.

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Burkhead, L.M., Sapienza, C.M. & Rosenbek, J.C. Strength-Training Exercise in Dysphagia Rehabilitation: Principles, Procedures, and Directions for Future Research. Dysphagia 22, 251–265 (2007). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00455-006-9074-z

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  • Deglutition
  • Deglutition disorders
  • Dysphagia
  • Swallowing
  • Exercise
  • Strengthening
  • Muscle