Speech therapists or pathologists work with patients who have experienced stroke (aphasia, apraxia, and dysarthria), traumatic brain injury, swallowing/dysphagia disorders, voice disorders, laryngectomy secondary to head and neck cancer, and tracheostomy and ventilator dependency.
The goal of speech therapy is to help the patient achieve and restore the best possible communication and swallowing skills. Treatment involves oral, pharyngeal and laryngeal exercises, pronouncing and recalling words, cognitive-language exercises, diet modifications, and patient/family education.
Some of the services, procedures, and hospital areas covered most commonly by the speech pathologists at St. Vincent's HealthCare are:
- PMV (Passy Muir Valve) with tracheostomy patients
- General speech and swallow patients
- Voice patients using Visipitch technology
- Modified Barium Swallow Studies to determine swallowing function
- Laryngectomy patients for prosthetic placement and teaching
St. Vincent's Rehabilitative Services Department includes a staff of multiple speech and language pathologists who work together as a close team to treat both inpatients and outpatients. All speech pathologists at St. Vincent's HealthCare have a master's degree and hold a license to practice in the state of Florida.