Muscle Tension Dysphagia: Contributing Factors and Treatment Efficacy

Christina H. Kang, Nan Zhang, David G. Lott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: To determine factors contributing to disease etiology and treatment efficacy. Study Design: Original Report. Setting: Tertiary academic center. Methods: IRB approved prospective study of 20 patients with reported dysphagia who exhibited normal oropharyngeal and esophageal swallowing function as evidenced by videofluoroscopic swallow study, esophagogastroduodenoscopy, high-resolution esophageal manometry with stationary impedance, and Bravo pH probe off proton pump inhibitor. Patients underwent speech-language pathology intervention. Results: Atypical laryngeal muscle tension was present in 100% of patients. Forty percent of patients had diagnosed positive gastroesophageal reflux disease. Sixty-five percent of patients showed signs of non-specific laryngeal inflammation and laryngeal hyperresponsiveness during strobolaryngoscopy. All patients reported a mean of 90% recovery by the completion of voice therapy directed toward unloading muscle tension. Conclusion: The study results suggest an association between laryngeal muscle tension and these patients’ dysphagia symptoms regardless of associated conditions. Speech-language pathology intervention showed high treatment efficacy. Level of Evidence: 2c- Outcomes research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)674-681
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Otology, Rhinology and Laryngology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2021


  • functional dysphagia
  • idiopathic dysphagia
  • laryngeal hyperfunction
  • laryngeal hyperresponsiveness
  • laryngeal hypersensitivity
  • muscle tension dysphagia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


Dive into the research topics of 'Muscle Tension Dysphagia: Contributing Factors and Treatment Efficacy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this