Right around this time of year, PSLs start showing up in Starbucks. Yes, Pumpkin Spice Latte. This aroma and smell gives way to pumpkin patches and colored leaves, and sights of scarfs being donned for the first time in 6 months. Then one notices the pumpkin patches, then the hay rides, then the costumes, then the candy and…before you know it, deep philosophical conversations about Halloween pop-up. There are always a few who have a few Wikipedia facts stored deep in their treasure chest:

“Oh, you mean All Hallows Eve…”

“It was actually switched to November 1 in 835…”

“It’s pagan, it’s not pagan, it’s Celtic Christian, it’s fun, it’s for kids, it…it…”

It had me thinking about origins. See, as a Speech-Language Pathologist, it does not take much for me to make connections from the daily chatter to our wonderful field. All this talk of Halloween origins, had me thinking, what was it like during the origins of dysphagia management?

history book

Dr. Michael Crary reminded me in the interview he did with Dysphagia Cafe (back in its humble beginnings) that people had dysphagia long before SLPs. That was a statement I really appreciated. So, like the little nerd I am, I went on a scavenger hunt and it led me down an amazing trail of pioneers and seminal works of literature. My hunt started with Logemann, Groher and Langmore in the early 80s. Then I searched their literature review and traced backwards. The interesting trend is that you see studies of pharyngeal “swallowing dysfunction” slowly back-step into its original documents. Additionally, notice the journals in which the articles appeared and which clinicians and researchers published the works. While this is by no means an exhaustive list, hopefully this will lead you on an interesting and enjoyable journey back to our original origins. Some may be interesting, some may seem scary, but it’s all about what we’ve learned to keep moving forward to have the conversation. I know many will have others to add to this list. Please do so by commenting below.

Groher, M.E. 1984.Dysphagia: Diagnosis and Management. Stoneham: Butterworths

Logemann, J.L. 1983.Evaluation and Treatment of Swallowing Disorders. San Diego: College-Hill Press

Ravich W.J., M.W. Donner, K. Haskins, D.W. Buchholz, B.R. Marsh, T.R. Hendrix, S.S. Kramer, B. Jones, J.F. Bosma and A.A. Siebens 1985. The swallowing center concepts and procedures.Gastrointest. Radiol. 10:255–261

Zimmerman, J.E., and L.A. Oder 1981. Swallowing dysfunction in acutely ill patients.Physical Therapy 61:1755–1763

Winstein, C.J. 1981. Neurogenic dysphagia: Frequency, progression, and outcome in adults following head injury.Phys. Ther. 63:1992–1997

Ravich WJ, Jones B, Kramer SS, Donner MW: Unexplained pharyngeal dysphagia — the role of esophageal disease (abstr).Gastroenterology 84:1282, 1983

Sokol EM, Heitman P, Wolfe BS, Cohen BR: Simultaneous cineradiographic and manometric study of the pharynx, hypopharynx and cervical esophagus.Gastroenterology 51:960–974, 1966

Hurwitz AL, Nelson JA, Haddad JK: Oropharyngeal dysphagia — manometric and cine esophagraphic findings.Dig Dis 20:313–324, 1975

Murray JP: Neuromuscular and functional disorders of the pharynx.J Fac Radiol 9:922–931, 1958

Crichlow TVL: Cricopharyngeus in radiography and cineradiography.Br J Radiol 29:546–556, 1956

Templeton RE, Kredel RA: Cricopharyngeal sphincter: roentgenologic study.Laryngoscope 53:1–12, 1943