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Am J Speech Lang Pathol. 2017 Jun 22;26(2S):682-686. doi: 10.1044/2017_AJSLP-16-0101.

The Effects of Lip-Closure Exercise on Lip Strength and Function Following Full Facial Transplantation: A Case Report.

Author information

1
Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, MGH Institute of Health Professions, Boston, MA.
2
Center for Reconstructive and Restorative Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA.

Abstract

Purpose:

Facial transplantation is a relatively new option for individuals with severe facial disfigurements. Clinical case studies on existing patients indicate many instances of persistent facial motor impairment for facial expression, speech, and swallowing. These preliminary findings motivate additional research on the impact of lip-strengthening exercises following facial transplantation.

Method:

In this study, we assessed the efficacy of an 8-week, biofeedback-driven, lip closure-strengthening exercise program in a single patient 1-year status post-full facial transplantation. Exercise was at 60% of peak strength. Outcome measures included instrumental measures of lip strength and mobility, clinical measures of speech, and patient-reported outcomes in feeding and facial expression.

Results:

Results revealed improvements in labial strength, speed of lip movement, and range of motion during speech. A 3-point improvement in sentence speech intelligibility was also observed following strength-training exercise. The patient reported improvements in her ability to drink from a straw and communicate via facial expression.

Conclusion:

These preliminary findings motivate additional research on the efficacy of lip-strengthening exercises following facial transplantation.

PMID:
28654949
DOI:
10.1044/2017_AJSLP-16-0101
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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