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Dysphagia (Difficulty Swallowing)

Dysphagia: Do you have difficulty swallowing?

Difficulty swallowing is termed dysphagia. If you have persistent trouble swallowing food and liquids, it may indicate a problem with your esophagus, the tube that moves food and liquid from your mouth to your stomach. Dysphagia makes getting the proper nourishment challenging and, if left untreated, may lead to other serious medical problems. Contact your primary care physician if you repeatedly feel that food is stuck in your throat, you gag or cough while eating, or you feel pain when swallowing.

It is important that you do not ignore symptoms of food getting stuck and choking, which are never normal. Many people delay seeking help, which can lead to problem outcomes.

Dysphagia: Diagnosis with our specialists

If your physician recommends that you have further evaluation, UF Health Jacksonville has specialists with expertise in diagnosis and treatment of dysphagia. An evaluation may include a test called manometry, which checks the pressure in the esophagus, an upper GI endoscopy, or other specialized tests.

Dysphagia: Our expertise

Once our highly trained gastroenterologists determine the reasons you have having difficulty swallowing, they will coordinate your treatment options with other hospital specialists such as speech-language pathologists or ear, nose and throat physicians. Treatment options include simple medical therapies like medications, endoscopic therapies and surgical therapies.

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