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Esophageal Dysphagia: Diagnosis & Treatment

Open to Speech-Language Pathologists


Ashli O’Rourke, M.D.
Assistant Professor
Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery
Medical University of South Carolina


Saturday July 18, 2015
Registration at 7:00, Course from 8:00-5:00 pm


Memorial Hermann Hospital-TMC
Hermann Conference Center
6411 Fannin
Houston, TX 77030

Ashli ORourke MD

Course Description

This course will provide introductory to intermediate level information regarding esophageal disorders that can lead to esophageal dysphagia. This important subject is often overlooked but is critical knowledge for the dysphagia clinician. We will cover

  • Basic anatomy and physiology of the esophagus
  • Common esophageal pathologies
  • Diagnostic tests for esophageal dysphagia
  • Treatment for esophageal disorders

Learning Objectives / Outcomes

Upon completion of this course participants will be able to:

  1. Participant will become familiar with basic anatomy and physiology of the esophagus
  2. Participant will be able to name at least 3 common esophageal pathologies that can lead to dysphagia symptoms.
  3. Participant will understand various diagnostic tests for esophageal dysphagia and how these tests complement each other.
  4. Participant will be exposed to the appropriate treatment for various esophageal disorders and know the appropriate time to refer patients for medical evaluation.

Assessment of Learning Objectives: Discussion, question / answer, course evaluation

Speaker Information

Ashli O’Rourke, M.D., is originally from Orlando, Florida. She attended Florida State University where she received her Bachelors and Masters degrees in Speech – Language Pathology & Audiology. She practiced clinical speech-language pathology for over seven years at Emory University Hospitals in the Atlanta area, specializing in dysphagia evaluation and management.

Dr. O’Rourke attended medical school at the Medical College of Georgia, graduating in 2005. She completed both her general surgery internship and her otolaryngology – head and neck surgery residency at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia. She went on to complete a fellowship in Laryngology – Voice and Swallowing Disorders at the Medical College of Georgia.

Dr. O’Rourke has been board certified through the American Board of Otolaryngology since 2012. Her career interests include swallowing disorders (dysphagia), voice disturbances, and airway concerns. She specializes in many in-office procedures including KTP laser treatment of oral and laryngeal lesions, vocal fold injection medialization, Botox injections for laryngeal spasm/spasmodic dysphonia, laryngeal biopsy, pharyngoesophageal manometry and transnasal esophagoscopy.

Conflicts of Interest Disclosures

Policy & Procedures exist whereby all speakers must disclose any relationships which may cause a conflict of interest. Any relevant financial and non-financial relationships will be disclosed via speaker agreement, written notification after agreement, and prior to presentation.

Speaker Disclosures

  • Financial: Payment and travel expenses for course
  • Other Remuneration: Receives research funding from Given Image for providing technical and equipment support
  • Non-financial: None

Saturday, July 18, 2015

TimeTopic & Activity
7:00 - 8:00amRegistration
8:00 - 9:00 amIntroduction to Esophageal Dysfunction and Dysphagia
  • Discussion of swallowing as a continuum from mouth to stomach
  • Effects on oropharyngeal symptoms
9:00 - 9:30 amEsophageal Anatomy and Physiology
9:30 - 9:45 amBreak
9:45 - 11:00 amDiagnostic Tests for Esophageal Dysphagia
  • Will discuss MBS esophageal follow through, esophagram, HRM, endoscopy
  • Appropriate referrals will be discussed
11:00 am - 12:00 noon

Gastroesophageal and Laryngopharyngeal Reflux

  • Will discuss diagnosis of reflux
  • Advanced interpretation of FEES when reflux is involved
  • Relationship between GER/LPR and dysphagia
  • What is in the SLP scope of practice
  • Appropriate treatment
12:00 noon - 1:00 pmLunch provided
1:00 - 3:00 pm

Disorders of the Esophagus

  • Includes medication induced esophagitis & medication related dysphagia
  • Impact of radiation to laryngeal and esophageal areas on swallowing function


3:00 - 3:15 pmBreak
3:15 - 3:45 pm

Medical and Surgical Treatment of Esophageal Dysphagia

  • Appropriate referrals will be discussed


3:45 - 4:45 pmCase Presentations
4:45 - 5:00 pm

Wrap up, questions, course evaluation

Participants must attend the entire course in order to receive CEU’s/CCU’s and course certificate. No partial credits will be given.


This course is offered for 0.75 ASHA CEUs.

Instructional Level: Intermediate, Professional Area

SLP: Memorial Hermann Healthcare System is an ASHA Approved Provider of continuing education- provider ID ABAF. This course is offered for 0.75 ASHA CEU’s. The assignment of ASHA CEU’s does not imply endorsement of specific course content, products, or clinical procedures from ASHA.

ASHA Classification Code: 1030.

Instructional Methods Used: Lecture, group discussion, question/answer.

Class Size: Registration is open to 40 participants.


Registration ends July 15, 2015

Complete registration form and payment are required to reserve your place in the course. Registration fee includes: Course Materials & lunch. $180 - Standard Rate; $150 - MHHS Employee Rate. MHHS employees must register with their MHHS emails to receive discount. Any questions, please contact

Other Information


Please refer to Texas Medical Center for information on parking. The closest parking is available in Garage 4 and is next to Memorial Hermann or Valet service is available.

Hotel Accommodations

A block of rooms has been reserved until July 4, 2015, at the Wyndham Houston Hotel & Suites Medical Center based on availability. Reservations: (713) 577-1235 or 1-866-781-2832 (toll free).

Wyndham Event Page
Reference code: TIRR Esophageal Dyspahagia

RoomSingle RateDouble RateTriple RateQuad Rate
Deluxe Suite with Kitchenette$119$119$119$119
Master Suite King$139$139$139$139


Refunds, less a 50% charge, will be granted if cancellation notice is received in writing no later than June 30, 2015 prior to the course start date to

If you register and do not attend, or do not fulfill the requirements of the class, your course fee will not be refunded. Cancellation of the event by TIRR Memorial Hermann will result in a full refund of monies received. TIRR Memorial Hermann is not responsible for the refund of travel or hotel expenses under any circumstances. TIRR Memorial Hermann reserves the right to cancel or change any programs for due cause. In the event of a cancelation, participants will be notified via email and contact phone number submitted in the registration.


Contact Celine Mathews @(713) 799-5002 or email