Relationship between swallow-specific quality of life and fiber-optic endoscopic evaluation of swallowing findings in patients with head and neck cancer

Michelle Florie, Laura Baijens*, Bernd Kremer, Kenneth Kross, Martin Lacko, Femke Verhees, Bjorn Winkens

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background. The purpose of this study was to determine the relationship between swallow-specific quality of life (QOL) using the MD Anderson Dysphagia Inventory (MDADI) and the swallowing function using a standardized fiber-optic endoscopic evaluation of swallowing (FEES) protocol in patients with dysphagia with head and neck cancer. Methods. Sixty-three patients with dysphagia and head and neck cancer were enrolled in the study. Patients completed the MDADI questionnaire and underwent a standardized FEES examination. Ordinal FEES variables were measured. Descriptive statistics and 1-way analysis of variance tests were carried out. Results. For all FEES variables, the observer agreement level was sufficient (kappa >= 0.7). These preliminary results show statistically significant mean differences of MDADI subscales between the ordinal scale levels for several FEES variables. Conclusion. The MDADI questionnaire can be used to assess the impact of dysphagia on the patients' health-related QOL. Despite clear trends, it remains unclear if the MDADI questionnaire can be used as an indicator for the severity of oropharyngeal dysphagia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E1848-E1856
JournalHead and Neck-Journal for the Sciences and Specialties of the Head and Neck
Issue numberS1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2016


  • dysphagia
  • deglutition disorder
  • health-related quality of life
  • MD Anderson Dysphagia Inventory (MDADI)
  • head and neck cancer

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