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Everyone must stay at home to help stop the spread of coronavirus. Advice for clinicians on COVID-19 (coronavirus) is here. If you are a member of the public looking for health advice, visit the NHS website or North Yorkshire Public Health. And if you are looking for the latest travel information, and advice about the government response to the outbreak, go to the gov.uk website.

Last updated: 30 March, 2020 15:59pm

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Dysphagia (Swallowing Difficulties) – Information for GPs

Referral Criteria / Commissioning position

Any dysphagia warrants further investigation. This may not be an ENT problem. It may be in the realm of the gastroenterologists or neurologist or even the cardiothoracic surgeons depending on the complete picture.

Investigations prior to referral

CXR – exclude sinister non-ENT causes

Information to include in referral letter

The GP referral letter should contain:

  • The length of time and the details of onset of the dysphagia
  • Is the dysphagia present all the time?
  • Any associated features
  • Relevant past medical/surgical history
  • Drug history (prescribed and non-prescribed)
  • Current regular medication
  • BMI
  • Smoking status
  • Alcohol consumption
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