Health & Medical Neurological Conditions

Pediatric Dysphagia and Seizures

    Identification

    • Symptoms of dysphagia in children include lengthy feeding times, food or liquid leaking from the mouth, tension during feeding, and choking or coughing during meals. Dysphagia can interfere with normal growth, causing affected children to lose weight or grow slowly. Dysphagia is typically an ongoing problem that requires treatment.

    Causes

    • Dysphagia in children is often caused by neurological disorders such as cerebral palsy or meningitis, disorders which also cause seizures. A certain type of treatment for epilepsy, called vagus nerve stimulation, can also cause dysphagia. It is common for children with neurological disorders to suffer from both dysphagia and seizures.

    Treatment

    • Exercises to strengthen the throat muscles and techniques to swallow more effectively can help with dysphagia. Seizures are often treated with anti-convulsant medications. For neurological disorders such as cerberal palsy, a combination of medications, physical therapy and lifestyle adaptations are most effective.

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