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Club Staffing - December 2019

Myofascial Release and Treatment of Dysphagia

Angela Hein Ciccia, PhD, CCC-SLP

March 16, 2009



What is the current thinking and/or clinical research on the effectiveness of myofascial release when used with dysphagia patients?


Myofascial Release can help with speech, dysphagia, TMJ, breath support/respiration, voice disorders, aphasia, just to name a few. There are hyoid releases, thoracic techniques, cervical techniques, as well as intra-oral techniques which help open up the intraoral structures, allowing for ease of swallowing, improved swallow reflex, improved tongue mobility for increased ability to manage food and mastication.

The drag that can be created on the fascial system can transmit excessive pressure (2,000 lbs per square inch) into the hyoid, cervical, and TMJ apparatus. Neurologically the downward drag can put pressure on the trigeminal nerve that innervates the TMJ area and muscles of mastication and/or glossopharyngeal and hypoglossal nerves, producing symptoms in the regions that Speech Pathologists treat everyday.

More and more Speech Pathologists are coming to the John F. Barnes' Myofascial Release Seminars. They are reporting back to us that after taking the seminars that their patients are doing significantly better, making incredible gains in their progress and these SLP's are now doing only Myofascial Release in their practice. For more information, please call 1-800-327-2425 (1-800-FASCIAL), and visit our website www.myofascialrelease.com.

Donna Killion, MS, CCC/SLP, LMT received her Masters of Science in Speech Language Pathology from James Madison University in 1992 and her Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from Allegheny College in 1988. She is currently a senior instructor with the John F. Barnes Myofascial Release Seminars along with her work as a Speech Pathologist and Licensed Massage Therapist at the Myofascial Release Treatment Center in Paoli, Pennsylvania and Therapy on the Rocks in Sedona, Arizona.

angela hein ciccia

Angela Hein Ciccia, PhD, CCC-SLP

 Angela Hein Ciccia, Ph.D., CCC-SLP is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences. Dr. Ciccia's research focuses on factors that impact children's ability to recover/develop in the presence of a diagnosis of an acquired (i.e., new onset) and/or developmental neurogenic communication disorder. Dr. Ciccia is also interested in the use of novel service delivery models (including telemedicine) to enhance access to rehabilitation/support services for these children. She is the current Co-Chair of the Pediatric Networking Group of ACRM and a member of the Pediatric/Adolescent TBI Task Force of ACRM. 

Related Courses

20Q: Addressing the Needs of Children and Teens with Traumatic Brain Injury
Presented by Angela Hein Ciccia, PhD, CCC-SLP


Angela Hein Ciccia, PhD, CCC-SLP
Course: #9302Level: Intermediate1 Hour
  'Very helpful content and information'   Read Reviews
This course will focus on the prevalence of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and concussion in children and teens, the communication issues that can occur as a result, and recovery patterns. Current treatment guidelines - including return-to-learn protocols - and the role of the speech-language pathologist in the rehabilitation process will also be discussed.

Adverse Childhood Experiences: Effects on brain, behavior and clinical practice
Presented by Angela Hein Ciccia, PhD, CCC-SLP


Angela Hein Ciccia, PhD, CCC-SLP
Course: #8929Level: Advanced1 Hour
  'A lot of supporting data'   Read Reviews
This is Part 1 of the five-part series, Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE): The Effects of Childhood Trauma on Communication. This course will provide a brief review of conventional and expanded adverse childhood experiences and discuss their implications. Specifically, the impact of ACEs on brain and behavior and the importance of this information to clinical practice for speech-language pathologists will be described. This course is presented in partnership with the American Board of Child Language and Language Disorders (ABCLLD). (Part 2: Course 8981, Part 3: Course 8984, Part 4: Course 8986, Part 5: Course 8992)

Dysphagia in Neurodegenerative Disease
Presented by Debra M. Suiter, PhD, CCC-SLP, BCS-S


Debra M. Suiter, PhD, CCC-SLP, BCS-S
Course: #9732Level: Intermediate1 Hour
  'Easily understandable information with helpful real life examples provided'   Read Reviews
Dysphagia is common in individuals with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and Parkinson’s disease. This course discusses the underlying pathophysiology and appropriate treatment programs for each disease, as well as use of alternate methods of nutrition/hydration.

Back to Basics: Swallow Screening: How, when, and who
Presented by Angela Mansolillo, MA, CCC-SLP, BCS-S


Angela Mansolillo, MA, CCC-SLP, BCS-S
Course: #8969Level: Introductory1 Hour
  'This professional development unit was very good in overall presentation'   Read Reviews
Screening of swallow function is a well-regarded tool to identify individuals who are potentially at risk of dysphagia and in need of full swallow assessment, but the options are many and varied. This "back to basics" course will teach participants to make informed, evidence-based choices regarding appropriate screening tools specific to their particular patient populations and settings.

ALS: Medications and Oral Care
Presented by Denise Dougherty, MA, SLP


Denise Dougherty, MA, SLP
Course: #8717Level: Intermediate1 Hour
  'Excellent presentation style'   Read Reviews
This is Part 1 of a three-part series on amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). This course will identify medication and complementary alternative medicine that may be used by patients to treat ALS. The importance of saliva management and mouth care as a critical component of their daily care will be discussed, along with strategies. (Part 2: Course #8719, Part 3: #8720)