For more information please call (570) 826-3900 (Wilkes-Barre) or (570) 348-1360 (Scranton).
Dysphagia typically refers to difficulty in eating as a result of disruption in the swallowing process. Dysphagia can be a serious threat to one’s health because of the risk of aspiration pneumonia, malnutrition, dehydration, weight loss, and airway obstruction. The signs of swallowing difficulties may include:
Coughing during or right after eating and drinking
Extra time or effort needed to chew or swallow
Food or liquid leaking from the mouth
Change in your voice after eating or drinking such as a gurgling sound
Weight loss or dehydration due to problems eating or chewing your food
A speech language pathologist will complete a swallow evaluation in order to determine exact nature of the difficulty. The speech pathologist will review the patient’s medical history, check on the muscles used for chewing and swallowing, and observe how the patient is chewing and swallowing.
Individualized treatment plan
Treatment varies depending on the cause and type of the swallowing difficulty. An individualized treatment plan will be designed just for each patient’s swallowing difficulty. The speech therapist will recommend ways patients can make the swallow safer and provide techniques to improve the swallow.
An adjunctive modality that combines electrical stimulation with traditional swallowing exercises, allowing therapists to accelerate strengthening, restore function, and help the brain remap the swallow. Research has demonstrated that combining these therapies results in better outcomes than using either one alone.
A special X-Ray test used in swallowing studies is accepted as the standard for detecting and evaluating swallowing abnormalities. This method not only allows estimation of risks of aspiration and respiratory complications but also helps in determining dietary and compensatory strategies.
Experia works with VitalStim Therapy to help patients learn to swallow again. The highly customizable treatment provides visual and auditory biofeedback during swallowing for objective measurement of effortful swallows. Experia establishes a baseline measurement of muscle activity, setting treatment targets. During therapy, electrical stimulation to the target muscle group is activated by the patient’s effort, creating a powerful reward-based biofeedback loop.
Continuum of Care
To provide the best care possible for patients recovering from a debilitating condition or injury, Allied Services provides a comprehensive, seamless continuum of rehabilitative care. Our outpatient programs are primarily for people living safely at home who have completed or did not require a post-acute inpatient stay, but require additional rehabilitative therapy to alleviate physical limitation or pain.
If a patient suffering from a debilitating condition or injury requires intensive, around-the-clock nursing and/or therapy services, but cannot tolerate or does not require the intensity of therapy delivered during an inpatient rehab hospital stay, or their insurance does not cover inpatient rehabilitation, they would be an appropriate candidate for a transitional or long-term stay at our skilled nursing facility. Conversely, if the patient requires 24-hour care and can tolerate the intensity of a stay at one of our rehabilitation hospitals, they would be best suited for a stay at one of our inpatient facilities.
At Allied Services, patient outcome metrics such as average number of visits, pain reduction, reduced function limitation, and likelyhood of recommending Allied Services to others, are among the best in the United States:
98% of our outpatient population reported that their overall rating of care received was either good or very good.
99% of our outpatient population reported that they would recommend out services to others.
98% of our outpatient population reported that they either had no pain or a decrease in their pain during their treatment.
Our outpatient rehabilitation facilities regularly outperform other outpatient rehabilitation providers nationwide. According to statistics compiled by the Press Ganey, Allied Services’ overall patient satisfaction score ranks in the top 10% of participating outpatient rehabilitation centers in the United States.
Referrals & Insurance
Patients need a prescription from their doctor in order to enroll in the swallowing program at Allied Rehab and Heinz Rehab. Insurance coverage for this program is provided by most health insurance policies. For specific questions on how to obtain a referral or health insurance coverage, please call (570) 826-3900 (Wilkes-Barre and the surrounding areas) or (570) 348-1360 (Scranton and the surrounding areas).
Start the referral process by contacting our admissions office. Referrals can be made ONLINE, PHONE, FAX, or EMAIL. Our admissions team can begin the admission process within 24 hours of receiving a referral. We offer this service free of charge and often serve as the referring facility’s primary educator and resource for family services.