Swallowing Related Problems of Toddlers with Down Syndrome

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Arslan S. S.

JOURNAL OF DEVELOPMENTAL AND PHYSICAL DISABILITIES, vol.35, no.4, pp.697-707, 2023 (SSCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 35 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10882-022-09875-4
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, CINAHL, Educational research abstracts (ERA), Linguistics & Language Behavior Abstracts, Psycinfo
  • Page Numbers: pp.697-707
  • Keywords: Down syndrome, Swallowing, Feeding, Parent-report, Mothers, CHILDREN
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


The study was aimed to define swallowing related problems of toddlers with Down syndrome (DS) by comparing toddlers with typically developing children (TDC). A total of 127 children (96 DS, 31 TDC), and their mothers included in the study. The presence of chewing disorders, food selectivity, drooling, coughing during swallowing was scored as 'absent' or 'present'. The Pediatric version of the Eating Assessment Tool-10 (PEDI EAT-10) was used to determine dysphagia symptom severity, and the Turkish version of the Feeding/Swallowing Impact Survey (T-FS-IS) was used to measure the impact of swallowing disorders on caregivers. Mothers of DS reported higher rates of chewing disorders (n = 39, 40.6%), drooling (n = 30, 31.3%) and coughing during swallowing (n = 50, 41.7%) than mothers of TDC (p < 0.01). The mean PEDI-EAT-10 score of children with DS was higher than TDC (p = 0.006). There were significant differences between groups in terms of T-FS-IS. Moderate to strong correlations were detected between PEDI-EAT-10 and total and subscale scores from T-FS-IS (p < 0.001). This prospective study defines swallowing related problems of toddlers with DS. The study results highlight the importance of early investigation of (i) swallowing concerns in children with DS, and (ii) caregivers' quality of life to define swallowing problems and plan an appropriate swallowing related management program.