Our Gastroenterology Blog

Posts for: October, 2019

What you need to know about swallowing disorders

Swallowing disorders are surprisingly common, though they rarely get the attention they deserve. Here we will explore the causes, diagnosis, and treatment of some of the most common swallowing disorders.

Johns Hopkins Medicine describes two kinds of swallowing disorders: Dysphagia, “the sensation of food or fluid being regurgitated or stuck in the chest; also any throat dyscoordination leading to coughing or choking during swallowing” and odynophagia, which they describe as “pain in throat or chest during swallowing.”

Symptoms of swallowing disorders

Since some swallowing disorders may be serious, it is important to get a proper diagnosis if you are experiencing the following symptoms. Gastroenterologists can quickly and accurately diagnose any swallowing disorder you may have. Symptoms of swallowing disorders include:

  • Pain while swallowing
  • Inability to swallow
  • Feeling like food is getting stuck in your throat or chest or behind your breastbone 
  • Drooling
  • Being hoarse
  • Regurgitation 
  • Frequent heartburn
  • Food or stomach acid back up into your throat
  • Unexpectedly losing weight
  • Coughing or gagging when swallowing

How we diagnose swallowing disorders 

GI Associates providers may order any of the following diagnostic tests to determine the best course of treatment:

  • Endoscopy
  • Barium esophagram
  • Esophageal manometry
  • Wireless pH testing
  • 24-hour pH impedance


Treatment for your swallowing disorder will be determined by what type you have. Your team at GI Associates will work together to develop the best solution for you.   

Think you may have a swallowing disorder? Contact GI Associates for a consultation by calling 877-442-7762 or fill out our online appointment form today.