Stroke victims, or those with Parkinson’s Disease may avoid the need
for a feeding tube with the help of a new speech therapy service known
as “VitalStim.” VitalStim uses neuromuscular electrical stimulation
(NMES), which refers to a small current stimulating the inside of the
neck to activate the swallowing muscles.
"I feel that VitalStim enables us as speech-language pathologists
to literally 'amp up' our treatment of patients with swallowing
disorders. As a patient, you could meet your goals faster by using this
technology combined with traditional swallowing exercises. Essentially,
VitalStim would help you return to a more normal diet or previous eating
habits following a stroke, brain injury, surgery and other neurological
- Lindsay McAlpin, Speech Pathologist
Speech Pathologist Lindsay McAlpin treated a patient who was on a feeding
tube when she started VitalStim therapy and was recently discharged on
an oral diet. The patient expressed her feelings about her therapy treatment.
"The electrical response taught me how to smile on the side of my
face that was affected and helped me to swallow my food again. My quality
of life is much better now."
For more information on
North Oaks Rehabilitation Services