What’s going on behind the scenes?
Swallowing liquids and solids is a complex coordination of nerves and muscles in the throat that can easily be taken for granted until a problem arises. Swallowing problems are caused by issues of the mouth, tongue, esophagus, stomach, or neurologic diseases like myasthenia gravis and multiple sclerosis. A tightening of the muscle at the esophageal opening in the diaphragm can cause problems with swallowing.
Sometimes this causes a pouch to form at the esophageal opening that sequesters food and drink. If the problem causing dysphagia lies beyond the throat in the esophagus itself, then a gastroenterologist evaluation is required.
How Tucson ENT can help
We can order a swallow study to help differentiate some of these problems. As ENT physicians, we focus on the tongue and upper esophageal opening, looking for strictures or distended pouches. This area can be relaxed with an incision, dilation or botox injection in surgery. These treatments are aimed at patients who have problems swallowing solid foods or have regurgitation of foods.
to learn more about mouth and throat conditions.