Predictors of Swallowing-Related Quality of Life in United States Veterans with Dysphagia
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While both dysphagia and poor health-related quality of life frequently occur in United States (US) Veterans, swallowing-related quality of life in this population has not been systematically examined. This retrospective clinical observation study aimed to determine the independent predictors of swallowing-related quality of life for a sample of US Veterans. We examined the following variables in a multivariate analysis to determine the predictors of Swallowing Quality of Life Questionnaire scores: demographic information, Modified Barium Swallow Impairment Profile (MBSImP) scores, Penetration-Aspiration Scale scores, anterior lingual pressures, and Functional Oral Intake Scale scores. MBSImP oral phase score was the only variable that reached statistical significance (p ≤ 0.01), demonstrating that a more severe physiologic impairment in the oral phase of swallowing was independently predictive of worse swallowing-related quality of life. These findings highlight the need for clinicians to consider how impairments in swallowing physiology may impact the quality of life more broadly for patients with dysphagia.
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