Validation of the 3-oz water swallow test for aspiration following stroke

Arch Neurol. 1992 Dec;49(12):1259-61. doi: 10.1001/archneur.1992.00530360057018.


A 3-oz water swallow test identified 80% (16/20) of patients aspirating during a subsequent videofluoroscopic modified barium swallow examination (sensitivity, 76%; specificity, 59%). It also identified patients with more severe dysphagia aspirating larger amounts (sensitivity, 94%; specificity, 26%) or thicker consistencies (sensitivity, 94%; specificity, 30%) of test material. The 3-oz water swallow test is a sensitive screening tool for identifying patients at risk for clinically significant aspiration who need referral for more definitive modified barium swallow evaluation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Barium Sulfate / administration & dosage
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / physiopathology*
  • Deglutition Disorders / physiopathology
  • Deglutition*
  • Fluoroscopy
  • Humans
  • Inhalation
  • Water


  • Water
  • Barium Sulfate