Assessment of fetal swallowing with gray-scale and color Doppler sonography

Roberto Grassi, Roberto Farina, Irene Floriani, Francesco Amodio, Stefania Romano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

OBJECTIVE. Our study was focused on the evaluation of fluid dynamics to assess the value of gray-scale and color Doppler sonography for evaluating the development of fetal swallow-related movements from early gestation until birth. MATERIALS AND METHODS. We examined 56 fetuses from weeks 15-39 of gestation. Each fetus was examined throughout four distinct periods of gestation: weeks 15-18, 22-25,30-34, and 37-39. During the examination, seven gray-scale sonography or color Doppler sonography patterns and their prevalence were considered. RESULTS. Mandibular and/or labial movements (χ2 = 56.4, p<0.0001) and their rhythmic activity (χ2 = 41.4, p<0.0001) were seen on gray-scale sonography in an increasing percentage of fetuses as gestational age increased. Doppler findings showed an increase for nose-mouth flow signals (χ2 = 57.6, p<0.0001), larynx-esophagus flow signals (χ2 = 13.2, p = 0.0003), and effective swallowing (χ2 = 36.0, p<0.0001) as gestational age increased. CONCLUSION. There is a trend in the fetus toward development of increased coordinated movement and more functional nose-mouth flow with increasing gestational age: 32.1% of the 56 fetuses in our series achieved effective swallowing at 37-39 weeks, on the basis of gray-scale and Doppler evaluations. Knowledge of the physiologic mechanism involving swallowing development may allow identification of altered swallow-related movements in fetuses with malformations of the digestive tract or with neurologic disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1322-1327
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Roentgenology
Volume185
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2005

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Doppler Color Ultrasonography
Deglutition
Fetus
Gestational Age
Swallows
Nose
Pregnancy
Mouth
Ultrasonography
Hydrodynamics
Larynx
Fetal Development
Lip
Nervous System Diseases
Esophagus
Gastrointestinal Tract
Parturition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology

Cite this

Assessment of fetal swallowing with gray-scale and color Doppler sonography. / Grassi, Roberto; Farina, Roberto; Floriani, Irene; Amodio, Francesco; Romano, Stefania.

In: American Journal of Roentgenology, Vol. 185, No. 5, 2005, p. 1322-1327.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Grassi, R, Farina, R, Floriani, I, Amodio, F & Romano, S 2005, 'Assessment of fetal swallowing with gray-scale and color Doppler sonography', American Journal of Roentgenology, vol. 185, no. 5, pp. 1322-1327. https://doi.org/10.2214/AJR.04.1114
Grassi, Roberto ; Farina, Roberto ; Floriani, Irene ; Amodio, Francesco ; Romano, Stefania. / Assessment of fetal swallowing with gray-scale and color Doppler sonography. In: American Journal of Roentgenology. 2005 ; Vol. 185, No. 5. pp. 1322-1327.
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abstract = "OBJECTIVE. Our study was focused on the evaluation of fluid dynamics to assess the value of gray-scale and color Doppler sonography for evaluating the development of fetal swallow-related movements from early gestation until birth. MATERIALS AND METHODS. We examined 56 fetuses from weeks 15-39 of gestation. Each fetus was examined throughout four distinct periods of gestation: weeks 15-18, 22-25,30-34, and 37-39. During the examination, seven gray-scale sonography or color Doppler sonography patterns and their prevalence were considered. RESULTS. Mandibular and/or labial movements (χ2 = 56.4, p<0.0001) and their rhythmic activity (χ2 = 41.4, p<0.0001) were seen on gray-scale sonography in an increasing percentage of fetuses as gestational age increased. Doppler findings showed an increase for nose-mouth flow signals (χ2 = 57.6, p<0.0001), larynx-esophagus flow signals (χ2 = 13.2, p = 0.0003), and effective swallowing (χ2 = 36.0, p<0.0001) as gestational age increased. CONCLUSION. There is a trend in the fetus toward development of increased coordinated movement and more functional nose-mouth flow with increasing gestational age: 32.1{\%} of the 56 fetuses in our series achieved effective swallowing at 37-39 weeks, on the basis of gray-scale and Doppler evaluations. Knowledge of the physiologic mechanism involving swallowing development may allow identification of altered swallow-related movements in fetuses with malformations of the digestive tract or with neurologic disorders.",
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