Useful in retraining patients with dysphagia, a condition that causes difficulties when swallowing, VitalStim® retrains the muscles needed to complete the swallowing process through specially designed electrodes attached to the patient’s neck. A small current stimulates motor nerves, causing the muscles in the neck to contract for improved swallowing. Repeated therapy helps to gradually retrain the muscle groups to complete the swallowing process.
In a clinical trial of nearly 900 patients using VitalStim, more than 98% showed improved scores in swallow function. More than 97% of the patients with severe dysphagia regained swallow function past feeding tube reliance and nearly 40% regained full swallow ability. Depending upon the severity level, VitalStim has been proven to be two to three times more effective than traditional stimulation therapy techniques.