Key Differences Between a Modified Barium Swallow Test and Barium Swallow

A Modified Barium Swallow test can confirm swallowing difficulties and help your physician understand how to help you cope with a swallowing disorder. Many people confuse Modified Barium Swallow tests with a Barium Swallow, even though there are several differences between the two tests.

A Modified Barium Swallow test analyzes the way you swallow in three phases: oral, pharyngeal, and upper esophagus. Comparatively, a Barium Swallow looks at the way liquid propels through the esophagus and down into the stomach. Other differences between the two tests include the following:

  • Before a Modified Barium Swallow test, you can eat. Before a Barium Swallow, you cannot eat or drink anything for 12 hours before the test.
  • During a Modified Barium Swallow test, you will remain standing or stay seated upright. During a Barium Swallow, you will lie down on a table.
  • You may eat or drink various foods and liquids during a Modified Barium Swallow test. During a Barium Swallow, the test will involve the thin liquid Barium.

Although Barium Swallow tests serve a specific purpose, there are many benefits that come from having a Modified Barium Swallow test done. For instance, the test lets your physician and your speech pathologist clearly identify the reason for your dysphasia. The test also enables your treatment team to make decisions to effectively manage your swallowing disorder.

Your physician or speech pathologist may order a Modified Barium Swallow test with us at TwinCity Medical Mobile. We will come to you and ensure the testing process is simple, convenient, and hassle-free.