Dysphagia (swallowing difficulties) denotes a condition when it takes more time and effort to move food or liquid from your mouth to your stomach. It is most common in older adults, but it can occur at any age. Our work revolves around the idea that we can use commercial off-the-shelf sensors such as microphones and accelerometers to learn more about the swallowing process. We measure sounds and vibrations on the neck during swallowing through an approach known as high-resolution cervical auscultation.
We typically acquire data during an x-ray swallowing exam and relate events captured by swallowing sounds and vibrations to over a hundred neuro/biomechanical/physiological events occurring during swallowing. Our advances in signal processing can be used to better understand brain networks by capturing electrical activity of the brain during swallowing.