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American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Adult Dysphagia. https://www.asha.org/PRPSpecificTopic.aspx?folderid=8589942550. Accessed November 11, 2019.
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The fiberoptic endoscopic examination of swallowing (FEES) is a procedure involving instrumentation in which an endoscope and camera are passed transnasally into the upper pharynx to allow visualization of the pharynx and larynx during swallowing.
The FEES is used to determine the nature and severity of swallowing impairment and to evaluate the effectiveness of therapeutic strategies used to improve the safety and efficiency of the swallow.
Risks include epistaxis, mucosal injury, gagging, allergic reaction to topical anesthetic, laryngospasm, and vasovagal response.
As the FEES requires the insertion of an endoscope through the nares into the upper pharynx, a topical or spray anesthetic and nasal decongestants are often offered to patients ahead of endoscope insertion.
Following endoscope insertion, the FEES involves observation of events inside the oropharynx during swallowing. Food coloring is often added to liquid or food stimuli to assist visualization and discrimination from other bodily fluids.