Tag: Dysphagia

3. Diseases and Disorders of the Esophagus

After you chew and swallow food, it travels down your esophagus and into the stomach. Most of the time, you don’t even think about the simple, everyday act of chewing and swallowing—after all, you’ve been doing it since you were born. But sometimes, people have trouble chewing their food into

2. Diagnostic Tests

In many cases, a digestive disorder can be diagnosed from common symptoms, a physical exam, and simple blood tests. But many digestive disorders share symptoms, making diagnosis tricky. Plus, some diseases, like colon cancer, need to be detected before symptoms appear so they can be effectively treated. In these incidences,

ALS: What Is Lou Gehrig’s Disease?

ALS: What Is Lou Gehrig’s Disease?

ALS—the abbreviation for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis—is a rare neurological disorder that’s eventually fatal. It was July 4, 1939, when Lou Gehrig made his famous “luckiest man alive” speech at Yankee Stadium, an event that helped give widespread attention to ALS. Gehrig, when he was diagnosed, was only 36 years old

Do You Have Trouble Swallowing? You’re Not Alone

Do You Have Trouble Swallowing? You’re Not Alone

If you have trouble swallowing, you have dysphagia. If that trouble swallowing is associated with pain, it’s called odynophagia. These are big words for an annoying—and potentially dangerous—disorder that most of us call “trouble swallowing.”

According to the National Foundation of Swallowing Disorders, the number of those who have trouble swallowing

Ask the Doctor: Adult Ear Infections; Geriatric Surgery

Q: I’ve been having pain, along with a “full” sensation, in one of my ears. Is it possible for older adults to get ear infections? I thought these were mainly a childhood problem.

A: Yes, older adults can suffer from ear infections, particularly if they swim frequently. If water doesn’t drain

Speech Therapy: What Is It and How Can You Do It at Home?

Speech Therapy: What Is It and How Can You Do It at Home?

Nearly 7.5 million Americans have difficulty using their voices, claims the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. Whether they were born with a condition that makes it hard to verbalize (i.e. autism) or developed speech difficulties following an accident or stroke (i.e. aphasia), these people have one major

Acid Reflux: Here’s How to Avoid This Common Digestive Ailment

Acid Reflux: Here’s How to Avoid This Common Digestive Ailment

Acid reflux, also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), occurs when the contents of the stomach pass into the esophagus and cause inflammation. For many people, it causes mild but unpleasant symptoms of heartburn, regurgitation, and trouble swallowing, but if left untreated, it can increase the risk of stomach cancer.

A

Appendix I: Glossary

Achalasia: A disorder in which the lower esophageal sphincter fails to relax and open wide enough to allow food to enter the stomach.
Anal fissure: A small tear in the lining of the anal canal.
Anaphylaxis: A life-threatening allergic reaction in which breathing becomes difficult, blood pressure drops, and the tongue and

3. Diseases and Disorders of the Esophagus

The simple act of swallowing is the mechanical process that propels chewed food from the mouth into the esophagus (see Box 3-1, The Swallowing Process). In preparation for swallowing, the tongue moves the chewed food to the back of the throat. This triggers the swallowing reflex, and muscles contract to

2. Diagnostic Tests

In some cases, a digestive disorder can be diagnosed from symptoms, medical history, physical examination, and perhaps blood tests. However, many digestive disorders have symptoms in common, and some diseases, such as colon cancer, need to be detected before symptoms actually occur in order to be effectively treated. Therefore, specialized

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