Comparison of esophageal screen findings on videofluoroscopy with full esophagram results

Jacqui E. Allen, Cheryl White, Rebecca J Leonard, Peter C Belafsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Background Videofluoroscopic swallowing studies do not routinely obtain images of the esophagus. We incorporated a single esophageal screening swallow into our videofluoroscopic swallowing study protocol. The purpose of this study was to compare findings from "esophageal screening" with the results of full esophagram. Methods Patients undergoing videofluoroscopic swallowing studies with an esophageal screen followed by full esophagram between January 1, 2009, and October 1, 2009, were retrospectively reviewed. Comparison of esophageal screening and esophagram results were undertaken, with esophagram used as the gold standard. Results Seventy-four patients underwent esophageal screening and esophagram. Sensitivity of esophageal screening is 63% (CI 50%-73%); specificity is 100% (CI 39%-100%). Positive and negative predictive values of esophageal screening were 100% and 13%, respectively. Conclusions Esophageal screening identified 44/70 (63%) patients with esophageal disease. Esophageal screening is a simple tool that may guide further esophageal investigation. The sensitivity of esophageal screening is limited (63%). If clinical suspicion is high, formal esophagram should be considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)264-269
Number of pages6
JournalHead and Neck
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2012


  • deglutition
  • deglutition disorders
  • Dynamic videofluoroscopic swallowing studies
  • dysphagia screening
  • esophageal screen
  • esophagram

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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