Swallowing and Laryngeal Injury After Critical Illness and Surgery

Martin B. Brodsky, Ph.D., Sc.M., F-ASHA, is an adjunct associate professor and clinical researcher in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Employing a team science approach, he works closely with colleagues throughout the School of Medicine, School of Public Health, School of Nursing and School of Engineering, focusing his research on swallowing disorders and laryngeal injury after critical illness and surgery.

Current Projects

Dr. Martin Brodsky, an associate professor and clinical researcher in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Understanding and Improving Dysphagia After Mechanical Ventilation (K23 DC013569)    

May 1, 2014 to April 30, 2019

Goals: To investigate tongue weakness and other pathophysiological aspects of dysphagia and to evaluate a novel, multimodal, sensorimotor intervention during intubation to reduce dysphagia after extubation as a phase II clinical trial.

Role: Principal Investigator

Research Areas

Understanding Swallowing Impairments and Laryngeal Injury After Oral Endotracheal Intubation

The central question in Dr. Brodsky’s research in the critical care population is: “What changed that affected the patient’s ability to use his/her voice and swallow?” Some of this research is conducted in coordination with the Outcomes After Critical Illness and Surgery (OACIS) group.

Dr. Brodsky’s research found an 80 percent increased risk for clinically important symptoms of swallowing impairment for each day of intubation for up to six days, after which, risk plateaus in patients with acute lung injury. Another study followed research patients for five years to determine factors associated with recovery from dysphagia. Diversity of clinical practice and patient recovery patterns were the focus of the third study.

Related Publications

Advancing Understanding of Swallowing Physiology, Formal Assessment and Bedside Screening

Dr. Brodsky’s research interest in swallowing physiology started with the temporal analysis of swallowing mechanics and the coordination of breathing and swallowing in healthy and patient populations. He has also studied quality of life and swallowing physiology in patients with head and neck cancer, and worked on validating physiologic aspects of normal swallowing. Dr. Brodsky’s most recent work in swallowing physiology focused on synthesizing the growing clinical research literature to evaluate bedside screening for swallowing impairments and recommend the best evidence-based screening approach.

Collectively, this research has broad clinical implications for distinguishing normal from disordered swallowing and led to a clinical trial of a novel therapy for patients with critical illness.

Related Publications