OroPress is a new, low profile, portable, wireless tool that
enables stable measurement of tongue pressure during isometric (‘pushing’) tasks
and, more importantly, during swallowing.
Using this tool, a pressure-time product, the OroPress Absolute (OPA)
parameter, has been developed as a representative measure of lingual effort
In a sample of 57 adults aged 20-80+ years, of both sexes
and without dysphagia, tongue-palate contact pressures generated while
swallowing 5ml, 10ml of water and 5ml custard, were recorded using OroPress.
Data were examined for effects of gender, age and bolus condition (consistency,
volume). OPA was tested for stability of measure and then correlated with the criterion
standard, peak pressure recorded when swallowing (PMaxSW).
Swallowing pressures (PMaxSW;OPA) were positively
correlated with bolus viscosity. No significant age and gender differences were
found. Excellent stability of measure
(test, re-test reliability) was demonstrated and OPA was positively correlated
valid, reliable and reproducible measurements and improved accuracy of oro-lingual
pressure measurement during swallowing. With
such a tool, interventions/ therapy can be proactive and principled as outcomes
are better validated. To enhance specificity of intervention, measurement
parameters need to reflect the pressure and temporal qualities of swallow
function. OPA has the potential to
describe differences in effort made, and ability to sustain pressures, in
adults without dysphagia.
The results of these studies will enable more
accurate examination of the oral phase of swallowing as we establish this
highly accurate sensor as a criterion standard for oro-lingual pressure
measurement in clinical populations.