Dysphagia in Little Rock, AR

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Dysphagia is an individual's difficulty or inability to ingest food or liquid. There could be many explanations for why a person may experience dysphagia. It may be due to muscle spasms in the throat or esophagus, not chewing their food thoroughly, or other internal problems. Dysphagia can also refer to the feeling of food being stuck in one's neck or chest area. If you notice such symptoms and need treatment for dysphagia in Little Rock, AR there is help available. Reach out to our experienced GI specialists at GastroArkansas today for treatment options that we can provide to help you get back to an improved quality of life.

Dysphagia may be diagnosed as one of two variations and the causes are unique for each type.

Oropharyngeal dysphagia

Oropharyngeal dysphagia involves trouble when starting to swallow. Neuromuscular factors are more frequent in this variety of dysphagia. This is because the muscles of the mouth, the back portion of your throat, and the top portion of the esophagus directly communicate with the brain. Nerves in these locations can be damaged, causing issues with swallowing.

On some occasions, narrowed areas in the esophagus (strictures) or tumors forming in the rear of the throat can cause difficulty swallowing.

Esophageal dysphagia

The condition known as esophageal dysphagia has numerous causes. Some of the most frequent include:

  • Achalasia (the condition where the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is unable to relax while swallowing because of a problem with nerve control)
  • Blockage by a foreign body in the esophagus
  • Esophageal muscle weakness
  • Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE)
  • Inflammation in the esophagus due to acid reflux
  • Esophageal spasms
  • Scarring in the esophagus from acid reflux (GERD)

The most frequent signs and symptoms of dysphagia include (but are not limited to):

  • Drooling
  • Inability to swallow
  • Food impaction (food getting stuck)
  • The sensation of food being stuck in your chest or throat
  • Aspiration pneumonia
  • Chest pain
  • Acid reflux
  • Discomfort when swallowing
  • Regurgitation
  • Liquid or food regurgitates via your nose
  • Gagging or coughing while swallowing
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Hoarseness

Should you have any of the symptoms of dysphagia or trouble swallowing, contact your local GastroArkansas in Little Rock, AR to connect with a specialist.

At GastroArkansas, we offer several treatment options to best address the individualized needs of our patients. Common treatments for dysphagia are:

  • Implementing exercises to re-stimulate the nerves that initiate the reflex of swallowing
  • Implementing different swallowing techniques
  • Surgical intervention
  • Dilation of the esophagus
  • Medications to reduce acid reflux, corticosteroids, or muscle relaxants
  • A liquid diet or feeding tube (for severe cases)

The best way to determine the correct method of care for your dysphagia in Little Rock, AR is to request a consultation with one of our skilled GI specialists who will customize a treatment plan based on your individualized needs.

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If you or a loved one are facing the symptoms of dysphagia in Little Rock, AR, help is available. Request a consultation with a GI specialist at a GastroArkansas location near you at your earliest convenience if you experience any combination of the listed symptoms consistently. It is essential to consult with your provider right away if weight loss or vomiting accompanies any difficulty swallowing.

I have been a patient of Dr Nutt for 11 years and she is the best Gastrointestinal doctor. She is patience and knowledgeable about my concerns .

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PA was very efficient, thorough, patient, and willing to answer questions. Needing an answer to her question she followed up with a phone call herself the next morning. Definitely recommended.

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I had been having abdominal pain for 2 days, but didn’t feel it was urgent enough to go to the emergency room. I called Dr. Kakati’s office and he personally called me back to figure out the best plan of care. He ended up working me into his schedule that day. His staff was personable and efficient. I highly recommend Dr. Kakati and the team at GastroArkansas.

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