Treatment burden associated with the intake of thickened fluids

Simon J. Steele*, Samantha L. Ennis, Claudia C. Dobler

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The implementation of thickened fluids in patients with dysphagia is widely considered an effective strategy for safe and physiologically improved swallow. However, there is limited evidence to suggest that this intervention reduces the risk of dysphagia-related complications including aspiration pneumonia. In addition, there is growing evidence that this approach is associated with adverse clinical effects including dehydration, malnutrition and reduced health-related quality of life. This review summarises the rationale for thickened fluids, the evidence base (or lack thereof) underpinning their use, and current guideline recommendations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number210003
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes


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