PART I: Feeding and Swallowing in Craniofacial Anomalies: Keeping up with Medical Management

January 16, 2015 9:00am - 4:30pm

*Advance Payment Required* This course is $149.

This event is open to OT/ST/PT.

This course is approved for 6 CEUs/6 CCUs by TOTA, TSHA and TPTA.


Elizabeth E. Sperry, Sc.D., CCC-SLP

Course Location:

Magnuson Grand Hotel and Conference Center 

3310 Troup Highway,

Tyler, TX


Course Description:

Breathing and eating are vital survival functions for any living being.  The presence of a cleft or other craniofacial anomaly may interrupt the normal breathing and feeding process, which can affect adequacy of respiratory health, nutrition, caregiver interaction patterns and oral-motor development.  Evaluating swallow function in a patient with a craniofacial anomaly can be ­­­quite complex and intimidating.  Early differential diagnosis of the impact that structural anomalies has on swallow function is critical so that therapeutic intervention can be managed appropriately and family members can be provided with the right information to form realistic expectations about feeding management as a function of changes that will occur over the course of surgical intervention and therapy.

This 6-hour presentation will illustrate the impact of craniofacial anomalies on swallow and respiratory function in children and outline strategies for addressing the resulting feeding issues in order to assist therapists in assessing and treating swallow function in this population. Following a review of normal oropharyngeal anatomy and physiology, participants will explore various craniofacial conditions (pre- and post-operatively)  through use of radiologic imaging, including VFSS and newly available computerized 3D images of the airway.

Dr. Sperry will conduct an analysis of targeted case studies illustrating specific craniofacial syndromes and anomalies, with an emphasis on building a more thorough understanding of the impact of the anatomical differences on respiratory and swallowing function as a starting point for therapy.  Examples of feeding equipment options will be available for demonstration.  Recommended further resources and parent handouts will be provided.

About Our Speaker:

Elizabeth E. Sperry, Sc.D., CCC-SLP

Dr. Sperry has extensive experience in the evaluation and treatment of feeding, oral motor, speech and resonance disorders related to clefts and other craniofacial anomalies in individuals from birth through adulthood.  She is an invited instructor at Baylor School of Medicine/School of Orthodontics; and a frequent invited speaker at presentations, workshops and lectures for local, state, national and international medical institutions, associations and conferences.   Dr. Sperry has published numerous papers, professional journal articles and book chapters.  She is one of the few non-surgeons elected as a member of the prestigious International Society of Craniofacial Surgery (ISCFS).

Learner Objectives:

As a result of this course participants will be able to:

  1. Identify and compare the relationship between normal oropharyngeal anatomy and normal swallow function,
  2. Discuss the impact of skeletal and  soft tissue abnormalities on swallow function,
  3. Outline key considerations in evaluating this population pre- and post-operatively,
  4. Explain the rationale for recommended therapy approaches in the presence of given cfa’s when analyzing case studies,
  5. Enumerate ways to facilitate carryover of therapeutic techniques in the home setting.

9:00 pm – 4:30 pm

This course is $149.


“Based on our CEU application method, TSHA requires all speech professionals miss no more than 10 minutes of class to receive full credit. Partial credit is not available for speech therapistsIf you are late to class at start or after break by more than 10 minutes, no credit can be granted, although you are still warmly welcome to attend.”

Thank You for your understanding of this externally mandated requirement.

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