A Breakthrough Treatment for Swallowing disorder:

The Speech-language pathology department at Ste. Genevieve County Memorial Hospital offers VitalStim™ Therapy for patients suffering from dysphagia — difficulty or discomfort in swallowing.

 VitalStim therapy is a noninvasive, painless treatment that uses controlled electrical stimulation to re-educate muscles to swallow. The therapy stimulates muscles to contract, increasing range of motion, preventing muscle atrophy and increasing local blood circulation. The treatment, the only one of its kind approved by the Food and Drug Administration, is prescribed by a doctor and administered by a speech-language pathologist who has received training and certification.

VitalStim can be used for patients of all ages with swallowing difficulty caused by stroke, traumatic brain injury, cerebral palsy, mouth or throat cancer, Parkinson’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS) and other degenerative and muscular conditions. With the help of VitalStim, many patients who once relied on feeding tubes can now enjoy a meal with their families. health care plan coverage.

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