Dysphagia Terminology

Apraxia-Loss of ability to perform purposeful movements, in the absence of paralysis or sensory disturbance, caused by lesions in the cortex.


Aspiration-The act of inhalation.


Auscultation-Act of listening for sounds within the body.


Barium-An element of the alkaline earth group of metals.  It has an atomic symbol Ba, atomic number 56, and atomic weight 138.  


Bolus-A bite of food or drink of liquid in the oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, or esophagus.


Buccal-Pertaining to the cheek.


Deglutition-The act or process of swallowing.


Dehydration-The condition that results from excessive loss of body water.


Diverticulum-A pathological condition manifested as a pouch or sac opening from a tubular or sacular organ.


Dry Swallow-The act of swallowing only saliva, not food or drink.


Dysphagia-Difficulty in swallowing.


Epiglottis-Thin leaf-shaped cartilage, covered with mucous membrane, at the root of the tongue, which folds back over the entrance to the larynx, covering it, during the act of swallowing.


Esophagus-The muscular tube through which food passes from the throat to the stomach.


Globus Sensation-A constant feeling of a lump in the throat.


Larynx-An irregularly shaped, musculocartilaginous tubular structure, lined with mucous membrane, located at the top of the trachea and below the root of the tongue and the hyoid bone. 


Oropharynx-Oral part of the pharynx.


PES (Pharyngeal Esophageal Segment)- the opening to the esophagus, sometimes called the upper esophageal sphincter. 


Pharynx-The hollow tube about 5 inches long that starts behind the nose and ends at the top of the trachea and esophagus.


Reflux-The term used when liquid backs up into the esophagus from the stomach.


Trachea-The cartilaginous and membranous tube descending from the larynx and branching into the right and left main bronchi.


Xerostomia-Decreased salivary flow.