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Table 2 Intervention characteristics of included studies

From: Exercise-based dysphagia rehabilitation for adults with oesophageal cancer: a systematic review

Authors, year

Exercises with Rehabilitative Purpose

Other Exercises and/or Compensatory Strategies

Mode, Frequency, Intensity, Duration Dosage of Intervention

Timing of dysphagia rehabilitation in relation to start of cancer treatment

Duration of rehabilitation (Mean +/−Std dev)

Okumura et al., 2016 [37]

Pursed lip breathing, Tongue exercises, Shaker “head lift” exercises.

Cervical range of motion exercise Shoulder stretch Jaw opening Respiratory therapy

Compensatory strategies: Modified food and fluids.

SLT & nurses in the surgical ward delivered initial verbal & written instruction.

See Additional file 1 for instructions. Exercises × 5 a day at home and upon admission to the hospital, up until the day before surgery.

Unclear if patient-led thereafter.

Prehab: Approximately 23+/− 9.2 days preoperatively

Rehab: from the time oral intake was resumed after confirming the absence of anastomotic leakage post-surgery.

Prehab: 23+/−9.2 Days pre-surgery.

Rehab: 26+/− 15 days post-surgery.

Tsubosa et al., 2005 [69]

Mendelsohn manoeuvre.

Long lasting change may have also potentially occurred from the super-supraglottic swallow.

Oral care, Neck and shoulder exercises Oral exercises, Thermal tactile stimulation,

Super-supraglottic swallow, Effortful breath hold.

Compensatory strategies: Multiple swallows, chin down, Modified food and fluids.

Article states ‘Intensively’ however no definition or information provided.

See Additional file 1 for information on exercises.

Post-operative- unknown precisely when.

9.7 +/− 6.9 days post-surgery.

5/9 participants required more than 1 round of rehabilitation.

Takatsu et al., 2020 [70]

Indirect training: Tongue exercises

Shaker exercise

Jaw opening

Thermal-tactile stimulation

Voice therapy

Direct training:

Education provision

Training while eating jelly:

Position adjustment- chin down

Effortful swallows, supraglottic swallow, adjusted bolus size supervised.

Food and fluid intake increased based on patient progress.

No detail provided on duration, frequency or intensity of indirect or direct training.

Modified water swallow test (MWST) completed by SLT after routine CT on POD 5 or 6. Patients with intermediate or high aspiration risk based on MWST provided with indirect and, if possible, direct rehabilitation.

Not provided

  1. Key: Std Dev Standard Deviation, SLT Speech and language therapist, Prehab Prehabilitation, Rehab Rehabilitation