, Volume 23, Issue 3, pp 280–285 | Cite as

Effects of Bolus Volume on Pharyngeal Contact Pressure During Normal Swallowing

  • Freya Gumbley
  • Maggie Lee Huckabee
  • Sebastian H. Doeltgen
  • Ulrike Witte
  • Catherine Moran
Original Article


This cross-sectional study investigated the effect of bolus volume on contact pressure within the pharynx and upper esophageal sphincter (UES). Three solid-state manometric pressure sensors were placed transnasally into the pharynx and the proximal esophagus of 40 participants (gender equally represented and between the ages of 20 and 45 years). Participants completed five repetitions each of three swallowing conditions: 5-, 10-, and 20-ml water bolus swallows. Repeated-measures ANOVA revealed no significant differences in the amplitude of pharyngeal contact pressure between the three swallowing conditions (sensor 1: p = 0.627, sensor 2: p = 0.764). Similarly, for durational measures nonsignificant main effects were found at both sensor 1 (p = 0.436) and sensor 2 (p = 0.350). Significant differences were found in UES pressure between the three conditions of bolus swallows (p = 0.000), with negative pressure in the UES inversely proportionate to bolus volume. However, durational measures of UES relaxation pressure were not significantly different between all conditions (p = 0.473). This study demonstrates no significant pressure differences of amplitude and duration between swallowing conditions in the pharynx. At the level of the UES, smaller boluses generated greater negative pressure.


Manometry Bolus Pressure Deglutition Deglutition disorders 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Freya Gumbley
    • 1
  • Maggie Lee Huckabee
    • 1
    • 2
  • Sebastian H. Doeltgen
    • 1
  • Ulrike Witte
    • 1
  • Catherine Moran
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Communication DisordersThe University of Canterbury, Van der Veer Institute for Parkinson’s and Brain ResearchChristchurchNew Zealand
  2. 2.Swallowing Rehabilitation Research LaboratoryVan der Veer Institute for Parkinson’s and Brain ResearchChristchurchNew Zealand

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