Letters

Gag reflex has no role in ability to swallow

BMJ 1996; 312 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.312.7036.972a (Published 13 April 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;312:972
  1. David G Smithard
  1. Consultant in adult and stroke medicine Queen Mary's Hospital, Sidcup, Kent DA14 6LT

    EDITOR,—B Norton and colleagues' study of percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy feeding after acute dysphagic stroke addresses an important subject, but owing to an apparent misunderstanding of the swallowing mechanism the authors have made some fundamental errors that will have affected their results.1 There is plenty of evidence to show that the gag reflex has no role in the ability to swallow.2 3 4

    Recently Davies et al have shown that up to half …

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