Presbyphagia and dysphagia in old age

  • Stefano Cavallero | stefano.cavallero@you.unipa.it Geriatric Unit, Postgraduate School of Geriatrics, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy.
  • Ligia J. Dominguez Geriatric Unit, Postgraduate School of Geriatrics, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy.
  • Laura Vernuccio Geriatric Unit, Postgraduate School of Geriatrics, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy.
  • Mario Barbagallo Geriatric Unit, Postgraduate School of Geriatrics, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy.

Abstract

Although presbyphagia is a clinically relevant problem among elderly population, possibly leading to dysphagia in old age, it remains a still underestimated health condition. The present review analyzes swallowing related anatomical and functional changes during aging, both in healthy people and in those affected by dysphagia. First of all, dysphagia in old people must not be confused with presbyphagia. To distinguish these two different conditions, a correct definition of both should be considered. Subsequently, a comprehensive evaluation including instrumental analysis should be carried out. The aim of this narrative review is to analyze the current knowledge of this clinical condition and to provide the state of art to clinicians. A systematic PubMed research on dysphagia in the elderly was conducted and most relevant and most recent references were manually screened and selected. The aim of a correct diagnosis is to enable the choice of a correct intervention in order to prevent and treat complications of dysphagia, such as ab ingestis pneumonia and malnutrition. Moreover, the assessment, diagnosis and therapy of dysphagia/ presbyphagia should include the intervention of different specialists.

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Published
2020-09-02
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Section
Reviews
Keywords:
Dysphagia, presbyphagia, aging, malnutrition, tube feeding.
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How to Cite
Cavallero, S., Dominguez, L. J., Vernuccio, L., & Barbagallo, M. (2020). Presbyphagia and dysphagia in old age. Geriatric Care, 6(3). https://doi.org/10.4081/gc.2020.9137