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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 11  |  Page : 533-536

The value of Oro-pharyngo-esophageal scintigraphy in the management of patients with aspiration into the tracheo-bronchial tree and consequent dysphagia

1 Regional Center of Nuclear Medicine, University of Pisa and University Hospital of Pisa, Pisa, Italy
2 Ear, Nose and Throat Audiology Phoniatrics Unit, University Hospital of Pisa, Pisa, Italy
3 Otorhinolaryngology Unit, University Hospital of Pisa, Pisa, Italy
4 Department of Nuclear Medicine, Santa Maria della Carità Hospital, Novara, Italy
5 Department of Nuclear Medicine, Santa Maria della Misericordia Hospital, Rovigo, Italy

Correspondence Address:
Domenico Rubello
Professor of Nuclear Medicine, Padova University, Padova, Italy, Director of Department of Molecular Imaging, Nuclear Medicine, PET/CT Oncologic Unit, Radiology, Mammography, Interventional Radiology, NeuroRadiology, Medical Physics, General Laboratory, Molecular Biology, Pathology, Microbiology, Head of Service of Nuclear Medicine and PET/CT Centre, Santa Maria della Misericordia Hospital, Viale Tre Martiri, 140; 45100 Rovigo
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1947-2714.170628

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Context: Tracheo-bronchial aspiration is the most invalidating condition which can happen to patients affected by dysphagia, especially when caused by central neurologic disorders; the associated pneumonia episodes represent the most frequent cause of death in these patients. Oro-pharyngo-esophageal scintigraphy (OPES) allows both functional imaging and semiquantitative evaluation of the subsequent phases of swallowing. Case Report: We evaluated by means of OPES a woman who had previously undergone high-dose external beam radiation therapy for a nasopharyngeal carcinoma, which determined tissue fibrosis and progressive dysphagia. Conclusion: In this patient with dysphagia, OPES was a simple, inexpensive, noninvasive, and reliable technique that allowed to show the presence of bolus aspiration and quantified tracheobronchial aspirate.

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