Objectives/Hypothesis: To demonstrate utility of the Mann Assessment of Swallowing Ability-Cancer (MASA-C) to describe change in swallowing ability in a cohort of HNC patients from pre-C/RT to post-C/RT to follow up at 3 months post-C/RT. An exploratory analysis compared patients treated with radiotherapy (RT) only to patients treated with chemoradiation (CRT). Study Design: Prospective Cohort. Methods: The MASA-C and Functional Oral Intake Scale (FOIS) were completed on 85 HNC patients within the first 5 days of CRT initiation, at the completion of C/RT (6 weeks), and 3 months after completion of C/RT. MASA-C total scores and clinical profiles were used to describe change in swallowing performance at each time point. Results: MASA-C and FOIS scores were significantly lower at 6 weeks and 3 months compared to baseline. Patients treated with CRT demonstrated more frequent and more severe dysphagia. Post C/RT items demonstrating the most deterioration included taste, diet level, oral mucosa, saliva, weight loss, and pharyngeal functions. Significant recovery was observed between 6 weeks and 3 months on both the MASA-C and FOIS. MASA-C items revealing the greatest recovery included taste, diet level, oral mucosa, tongue movement, weight loss, oral transit, voice, and pharyngeal phase. Few significant differences were noted between RT and CRT cases at 3 months. Conclusions: Swallowing functions deteriorate significantly following C/RT with incomplete recovery at 3 months. Few differences were noted between RT and CRT treated patients at 3 months. Clinical profiling with the MASA-C provides a standard, simple method to document swallow function change over time in these patients. Level of Evidence: 2 Laryngoscope, 131:E1873–E1880, 2021.
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