Chin Tuck Against Resistance with Feedback: Swallowing Rehabilitation in Frail Older People (CTAR-SwiFt) - A feasibility study a Research for Patient Benefit 

Investigators: Lydia Morgan, Aoife Stone, David Smithard 

Timescale: September 2021- May 2023

Funder: NIHR Research for Patient Benefit

Swallowing problems are more common in the frail population. Many frail older people admitted to hospital with community acquired pneumonia (CAP) will have aspirated saliva or food (90%).  

If the swallow can be improved by a simple exercise thereby improving nutrition and reducing aspiration, it may be possible CAP, loss of independence, infection and death and hence reduce health care costs will be reduced.

This is a feasibility randomised control study of two types of rehabilitation exercises using Chin Tuck against resistance with feedback (CTAR-SwiFt), using a device called ExerPhager (a rubber ball with pressure gauge, linked to a tablet via Bluetooth) to improve swallowing, eating and drinking.  

BSLTRU are working with the main study site (Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust) to recruit patients with pneumonia to this study.

The study aims to establish whether it is feasible to recruit enough participants to assess the effectiveness of this intervention in reducing dysphagia and community-acquired pneumonia, in a larger-scale multi-centre randomised controlled trial. It’s also examining patient’s willingness to participate, their compliance and acceptability of the intervention.

Screening for recruitment started in January 2022, Lydia is Principle Investigator for North Bristol Trust as well as the research associate for this study.