Malnutrition risk and oropharyngeal dysphagia in the chronic post-stroke phase

V A L Huppertz*, W Pilz, G Pilz Da Cunha, L C P G M de Groot, A van Helvoort, J M G A Schols, L W J Baijens

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Oropharyngeal dysphagia (OD) and malnutrition are associated with poor clinical outcomes after stroke. The present study evaluated (1) malnutrition risk and OD-related characteristics in patients with chronic post-stroke OD, and (2) the relationship between on the one hand OD severity and on the other hand functional oral intake and dysphagia-specific quality of life.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in a Dutch interdisciplinary outpatient clinic for OD. The standardized examination protocol comprised: clinical ear, nose, and throat examination, body mass index, the short nutritional assessment questionnaire (SNAQ), a standardized fiberoptic endoscopic evaluation of swallowing (FEES), the functional oral intake scale (FOIS), and the MD Anderson dysphagia inventory (MDADI).

Results: Forty-two consecutive patients with chronic post-stroke OD were included. Mean (±SD) age and BMI of the population were 69.1 (±8.7) years and 26.8 (±4.1) kg/m2 respectively. Seventeen (40.4%) patients presented a moderate to high risk of malnutrition (SNAQ score≥2). The FEES examination showed moderate to severe OD in 28 (66.7%) patients. The severity of OD was significantly related to the FOIS score but not to the MDADI scores.

Conclusion: In this specific sample of referred stroke patients, moderate to severe OD and moderate to high risk of malnutrition were common. Despite the use of clinical practice guidelines on stroke and a normal nutritional status at first sight, repeated screening for malnutrition and monitoring the severity and management of OD remain important elements in the care of patients with chronic post-stroke OD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)939735
Number of pages14
JournalFrontiers in Neurology
Publication statusPublished - 28 Sept 2022


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