July 2012 Newsletter


July 2012

Happy Independence Day!

Clinical Café Newsletter

By: Ronda Polansky M.S., CCC-SLP

Monthly Motivation:

Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.


Happy 4th of July to everyone celebrating our country’s independence and honoring our veterans and current military! Thank you to everyone who has served and/or is currently serving our country! We appreciate you more than you will ever know!  We know that freedom does not come free… there is a cost! DiagnosTEX will be closed Wednesday, July 4th in observation of this important holiday and we will run all clinics that Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. Please keep this in mind when scheduling your MBSS.


Texas Summers – HOT! HOT! HOT! Shall I describe it any other way??? Unfortunately, this time of year is one we dread in the mobile business!  Hot temperatures, being parked on hot concrete in the sun, running A/Cs on high, and/or sitting on one location for long periods of time can often cause our generators to overheat.  We take all precautions and maintain all required and preventative maintenance on our equipment, and strive to ensure this does not happen… but the Texas summer can be unforgiving and generators can only get “so hot” in triple digit temperatures. Please be aware that IF these generator issues occur we may have to adjust your scheduled time.  Any time we can park under a portico (covered entrance at the front of a building) would be helpful to us, your patients, and the completion of your studies.  Please check with your administrators on this; we appreciate your understanding. 


State of Texas Board of Examiners for SLP and Audiology –  DPS – FBI Fingerprinting

Amendments to the Texas Occupation Code 402 (Senate Bill 663, 82nd Legislature, Regular Session 2011) have added a new requirement for all applicants and all licensees to be fingerprinted for all license applications and license renewals postmarked on or after May 1, 2012. This will cost you $41.25.

Go to www.dshs.state.tx.us/speech/dps_fbi/ for more information, or contact speech@dshs.state.tx.us for board staff assistance.


Parkinson’s Disease – RICHARDSON, TX – Starting June 26, 2012, Parkinson Voice Project will begin hosting a free monthly information session for people with Parkinson’s disease and their families. The sessions will be presented by Parkinson Voice Project Founder and CEO Samantha Elandary, MA, CCC-SLP, and will consist of a lecture and video presentation about the basics of Parkinson’s and its effects on speech and swallowing. The lecture will take place on the 4th Tuesday of each month, December excluded.

Parkinson Voice Project is a Dallas-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people with Parkinson’s disease and related disorders regain and maintain their ability to speak and swallow.

What: Parkinson’s Information Session

Where: Parkinson Voice Project,500 N. Coit Rd #2085,Richardson,TX75080

When: 4th Tuesday of every month, excluding December

How: Call (469) 375-6500 or visit http://pdinfosession.eventbrite.com/

Why: To educate the community about Parkinson’s disease and its effect on speech and swallowing


CEU information (for future reference) – New TSHA policy (adopted from ASHA policy):

When someone arrives late to a conference or leaves early from the conference, you can no longer receive partial credit unless preapproved or an emergency situation has occurred.  Without meeting these 2 requirements, you will receive NO credit for the course.

This is the statement from TSHA: When partial credit is not requested or approved, participants must attend the entire course to receive credit.  If extenuating circumstances (participant emergency) arise during the course, an exception can be made to allow a particular participant to earn partial credit even when the course was not registered as such.  The sponsor would also need to indicate the mechanism by which the participant demonstrated achievement of the course learning outcomes.  If there is no emergency, participants listed cannot be awarded partial credit as they do not qualify for CE credit for the course. 

This is a NEW policy!  Over the many years I have been doing courses, TSHA has accepted partial credit.  TSHA stated they notified the change by broadcast email, but I did not see it.  I wanted to be clear and make everyone aware of this change for future courses.


Resource Site:   Dysphagia-Diet.com – Dysphagia Diet carries the most complete line of dysphagia-friendly products that meet the food texture and nutrition guidelines of the National Dysphagia Diet. These can be delivered directly to your home, office or care facility.


Dysphagia Tidbit

Aggressive therapy helps to improve outcomes for patients with head and neck cancer.

Targeted swallowing exercises can help alleviate a debilitating side effects in people undergoing chemoradiation therapy (CRT) for head and neck cancer, according to a new study (Archives of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery, April 2012)  The study suggests that clinicians should consider giving all patients undergoing CRT an exercise regimen to improve quality of life after treatment. Researcher Eric Genden, MD states that “difficulty swallowing is the biggest problem people face after undergoing chemoradiation, with an estimated 20 percent of patients losing their ability to swallow for the rest of their lives.” Strengthening the muscles around the damaged tissue may allow them to compensate. Other research indicated prophylactic swallowing exercises actually may prevent tissue damage. The authors plan to study the benefit of swallowing exercises at 9 and 12 months using a larger sample size than the one used (26 patients) to study effects after 3 and 6 months. Patients were assessed using the Functional Oral Intake Scale (FOIS) and the Performance Status Scale for Head and Neck Cancer.