Aspiration risk and postoperative radiation for head and neck cancer

Nam P. Nguyen, Cheryl Frank, Candace C. Moltz, Carrie Millar, Herbert J. Smith, Suresh Dutta, Alan Alfieri, Howard Lee, Paul Vos, Ulf Karlsson, Ly M. Nguyen, Sabah Sallah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The aim of the study was to assess the aspiration risk following postoperative radiation for head and neck cancer. Thirty-seven patients had Modified Barium Swallow before and following treatment. Dysphagia severity was graded from 1 to 7. Before treatment there were sixteen grade 1, seventeen grade 2, three grade 3 and one grade 5. Following postoperative radiation, two patients had grade 1, eleven patients had grade 2, thirteen patients had grade 3, four patients had grade 4, four patients had grade 5, one patients had grade 6, and two patients had grade 7. Nineteen percent (7/37) of the patients developed aspiration (grade 5-7). Aspiration is life-threatening and may develop for all tumor sites and stages.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-51
Number of pages5
JournalCancer Investigation
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Aspiration
  • Dysphagia
  • Head and neck cancer
  • Postoperative radiation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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