Signs and Symptoms of Aspiration
Aspiration: the entry of food or liquid into the airway below the true vocal folds; food or liquid “going down the wrong pipe”.
Silent aspiration: when a patient does not cough in response to aspiration and may appear to swallow safely.
- Coughing during and/or after meals
- Throat clearing
- Wet/gurgling voice after swallowing
- Respiratory changes or chest congestion
- Leakage of food or saliva from mouth or tracheostomy
- Excess secretions
- Shortness of breath
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 11/11/2010
Copyright © 11/11/2010 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#7117
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