Variability of starch-based thickened drinks for patients with dysphagia in the hospital setting
Payne, C., Methven, L., Fairfield, C., Gosney, M. and Bell, A. E. (2012) Variability of starch-based thickened drinks for patients with dysphagia in the hospital setting. Journal of Texture Studies, 43 (2). pp. 95-105. ISSN 0022-4901
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1111/j.1745-4603.2011.00319.x
Starch-based thickening agents may be prescribed for patients with dysphagia. Thickened fluids alter variables of the swallow reflex, allowing more time for bolus manipulation without compromising airway closure. This investigation explored the variation in viscosity and physical characteristics of thickened drinks prepared in different media under laboratory conditions and compared the results with those of thickened drinks presented to dysphagic patients in one hospital. The rheological characteristics were tested on a simple plastometer and a Bohlin CVOR rheometer (Malvern Instruments, Worcestershire, UK). Samples prepared to “syrup” consistency both in the laboratory and in the hospitalwere significantly different from each other (P < 0.0001). This was also the case for samples prepared to “custard” consistency. Differences existed not only in viscosity, but drinks prepared in different media produced different rheological matrices. This signifies different viscoelastic behaviors that may effect manipulation in the mouth. From this study, preparation of thickened drinks using starch-based instant thickening powders appears to be a highly variable practice.