Pediatric Swallow Studies

What Is An Oral Pharyngeal Motility Study (OPMS)?

Pediatric swallow studies are completed by highly trained Speech Language Pathologists using state-of-the-art dynamic, digital x-rays of the process of swallowing.

The study defines the nature of a child's swallowing disorder and identifies adaptations to facilitate improved swallowing. Complications such as silent aspiration, food/liquid residue and reflux can be visualized and analyzed for the influence of bolus size and food consistency.

A comprehensive evaluation includes clinical and instrumental examination of swallowing function, and is followed by recommendations for an individualized swallowing therapy program.

What Is Involved In Having An OPMS?

A small amount of food or drink in varying consistencies (infused with barium) is swallowed during the video studies. Parents bring a full meal with the child's own feeding utensils.

When Is An OPMS Indicated?

Infants and children who present the following symptoms could benefit from the information provided by a pediatric swallow study (OPMS).

  • Frequent upper respiratory symptoms/illnesses (asthma, wheezing, infections)
  • Poor weight gain or Failure to Thrive
  • Limited variety in the diet for age
  • Food aversion or refusal
  • Coughs, chokes or is congested with meals
  • Gags or vomits with meals
  • Excessive length of meals

There are two parts of the evaluation including:

  • Feeding Evaluation:
    The clinical feeding/swallowing examination includes a full assessment of the oral phase of swallow, liquids & solids as tolerated and a partial assessment of pharyngeal phase of swallow for overt signs of dysphagia during a typical meal.

  • Video X-Ray (OPMS):
    The digital videofluoroscopic examination of swallowing is performed in Radiology using barium infused textures, small amounts of liquids and solids, and a full assessment of oral and pharyngeal phases of swallow. Aspiration events can be fully analyzed and adaptations made to improve swallowing.

Schedule an Appointment

To schedule an appointment, physicians or patients can call Speech Language Pathology (727) 767-4141 or submit an online appointment request. A physician's prescription is required for the study.

We accept most traditional insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, and most managed care plans.