Correlation Between Pharyngeal Residue and Aspiration in Fiber-Optic Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing: An Observational Study

Yael Shapira-Galitz*, Hagit Shoffel-Havakuk, Doron Halperin, Yonatan Lahav

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Objectives: To examine the correlation between pharyngeal residue severity and clearance to penetration/aspiration on fiber-optic endoscopic examination of swallowing (FEES). Design: Retrospective cohort. Setting: Kaplan Medical Center dysphagia clinic. Participants: Patients (N=110) visiting a dysphagia clinic between 2014 and 2016 undergoing FEES. Interventions: FEES were scored for penetration/aspiration with the Penetration Aspiration Scale (PAS), for residue severity using the Yale Pharyngeal Residue Severity Rating Scale (YPR-SRS). The numbers of swallows required to clear the pharynx were recorded. The first and the worst bolus challenges for each consistency (liquid, purée, solid) were analyzed. Main Outcome Measures: YPR-SRS and number of clearing swallows were correlated with the PAS of the same bolus challenge. Results: The study population's mean age was 67±13.4 years; 54% were men (n=58). A significant correlation was found between the YPR-SRS and the PAS for all consistencies tested, in each anatomical site (vallecula or pyriform sinus) and for both the first and worst bolus challenges (P<.001 for all). The correlation of residue with aspiration was stronger when vallecula and pyriform sinuses scores were summated (Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient=0.573/0.631/0.446 for liquid/purée/solid for worst bolus challenge). Incorporating the number of clearing swallows to the YPR-SRS strengthened the correlation with PAS. Conclusions: Residue severity and clearance correlate with penetration/aspiration on FEES. The YPR-SRS can be applied to standardize description of residue in FEES and to aid in dysphagia evaluation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)488-494
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2019


  • Deglutition
  • Dysphagia
  • Rehabilitation


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