NMES Myth Busters

NMES is simply another term for electrical stimulation

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NOT TRUE! An orange is not an apple even though they are both fruits. An electrical stimulation protocol 

MUST meet certain criteria 

in order to be classified as NMES. 

Click below to discover that criteria

Criteria for NMES

You must use an FDA approved device for dysphagia

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NOT TRUE! All devices are FDA cleared for muscle re-education which can include ANY disorder including dysphagia. Click below for a full explanation and

 FDA legal opinion. 

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There are many anatomical sites that are appropriate for electrode placement

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NO THERE ARE NOT! There is only one site for pharyngeal dysphagia that is appropriate and that is in 

the submental region

 AKA the suprahyoid muscles. 

There is no other anatomical site

 that is biologically plausible.  

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There is not enough evidence for NMES and dysphagia

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FALSE! The fact is it meets 

the legal definition for 

preponderance of evidence. 

 There were over 134 articles published

 between 2000-2017 alone!

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Electrical stimulation will evoke a swallow

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NOT AT ALL! The use of NMES will not cause a swallow to occur but will cause

 the muscles of swallowing to contract. 

This is not the same thing. 

I need to be certified to use electrical stimulation

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NOPE! You need to be competent and skilled in order to perform the technique correctly. You may obtain a certificate for a course but ASHA does not recognize that as a certification. 

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