Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2017
UAD member and now Dr., Avinash Mishra defended his thesis this fall. Dr. Mishra's dissertation, Airway Protective Behaviors and Mealtime Performance in Children with Spastic Cerebral Palsy and Typically Developing Controls, was well received by the Teacher's College community. A summary of Dr. Mishra's work is described below.
Cerebral palsy (CP) is the most common physical disability in childhood. Dysphagia and resulting respiratory sequelae are highly prevalent in this population. Eleven children with CP and 10 controls participated in a comprehensive assessment of swallow and cough function. Compared to controls, children with CP presented with increased clinical feeding/swallowing severity and submental muscle activation. Additionally, children with CP displayed frequent post-swallow inhalation and reduced cough volume acceleration. This was the first study to objectively identify disordered cough (dystussia) in children with CP and identify its relationship with dysphagia in this population. These data highlight the need to target the continuum of airway protective behaviors for the comprehensive management of children with CP.