High Resolution Cervical Auscultation Signal Features Reflect Vertical and Horizontal Displacement of the Hyoid Bone During Swallowing

January 9, 2019

Cédrine RebrionZhenwei ZhangYassin KhalifaMona RamadanAtsuko KurosuJames L. CoyleSubashan PereraErvin Sejdić

Early Access Note:
Early Access articles are new content made available in advance of the final electronic or print versions and result from IEEE’s Preprint or Rapid Post processes. Preprint articles are peer-reviewed but not fully edited. Rapid Post articles are peer-reviewed and edited but not paginated. Both these types of Early Access articles are fully citable from the moment they appear in IEEE Xplore.
Position of the hyoid bone, C2−C4 and C3 on a videofluoroscopic image


Objective: Millions of people across the globe suffer from swallowing difficulties, known as dysphagia, that can lead to malnutrition, pneumonia, and even death. Swallowing cervical auscultation, which has been suggested as a noninvasive screening method for dysphagia, has not been associated yet with any physical events. Method : In this study, we have compared the hyoid bone displacement extracted from the videofluoroscopy images of 31 swallows to the signal features extracted from the cervical auscultation recordings captured with a tri-axial accelerometer and a microphone. Results: First, the vertical displacement of the anterior part of the hyoid bone is related to the entropy rate of the superior-inferior swallowing vibrations and to the kurtosis of the swallowing sounds. Second, the vertical displacement of the posterior part of the hyoid bone is related to the bandwidth of the medial-lateral swallowing vibrations. Third, the horizontal displacement of the posterior and of the anterior part of the hyoid bone are related to the spectral centroid of the superior-inferior swallowing vibrations and to the peak frequency of the medial-lateral swallowing vibrations, respectively. Lastly, the airway protection scores and the command characteristics were associated with the vertical and the horizontal displacement, respectively, of the posterior part of the hyoid bone. Additional associations between the patients’ characteristics and auscultations signals were also observed. Conclusion : The hyoid bone maximal displacement is a cause of swallowing vibrations and sounds. Significance: High resolution cervical auscultation may offer a noninvasive alternative for dysphagia screening and additional diagnostic information.



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