Speech Language Pathology

Our speech language pathologists, as part of a comprehensive multidisciplinary team, work closely with head and neck surgeons, radiation oncologists, nutritionists, and other specialists to develop an individualized treatment plan to ensure the best possible outcome for each patient.

Our goal is to restore and maximize communication and swallowing function through a variety of specialized programs.


Our highly experienced speech pathologists have expertise in the following services:

Swallowing Assessment and Treatment

A swallowing disorder, also called dysphagia, means you have difficulty or discomfort with swallowing food or liquids. The following specialized assessment and treatment options are offered:

  • Clinical Swallow Evaluation: The first step is a thorough evaluation of the individual’s current swallow function. Our speech language pathologist is able to make a comprehensive plan for therapy after the evaluation. Rehabilitation includes exercises to stretch and strengthen the muscles involved in swallowing.
  • Modified Barium Swallow Study (MBS): During the study, the patient swallows various consistencies of food ranging from liquids to solids that contain a substance called barium, which shows up on the x-ray. By watching the swallowing process on an x-ray, the speech language pathologist is able to identify any problems and make a plan for treatment.
  • Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing (FEES): During the evaluation, a thin, lighted tube, called an endoscope, is inserted through the patient’s nose and guided into the throat. A camera at the tip of the tube allows the team to evaluate any issues in the throat as the patient swallows various liquid and food consistencies.
  • Myofascial Release and Manual Techniques in dysphagia Management: This therapy targets the release of muscle tension to improve strength, range of motion, and coordination of the muscles of the mouth and throat to achieve functional swallowing.

Voice Assessment and Treatment

A voice disorder, also known as dysphonia, means you have difficulty achieving a functional voice to communicate. Sometimes people develop problems with their voice as a result of cancer or its treatment. Surgery or radiation therapy may cause the voice to become hoarse, weak, or completely lost.

  • Evaluation: Our speech pathology team provides complete voice evaluations; including analyses of vocal cord function and voice production, once cleared by a physician.
  • Treatment: Voice therapy uses exercises to strengthen the vocal cords as well as other approaches to compensate for an affected vocal cord. Our rehabilitation plans may include exercises, biofeedback techniques, and devices to increase and maximize muscle strength in your vocal cords, as well as improve breath support for the voice.

Speech Restoration after a Laryngectomy

Laryngectomy is a surgery to remove the larynx (voice box). As part of their recovery, people who have their larynx removed will need to learn a new way to produce speech. Our speech pathologists have particular expertise in working with people to regain their ability to communicate after laryngectomy. They provide comprehensive rehabilitation to patients before and after surgery, counseling them about their options and working closely with them and their families throughout the recovery process.

Ways we can help people communicate after laryngectomy include:

  • Electrolarynx: This is a device that allows for artificial voicing. You place it against your throat, push a button, and the machine transmits a vibration noise to your throat which you then form into words and sounds with your lips, teeth, and tongue. Many people are able to use the device within three to five days after surgery, using an adaptor for the mouth initially.
  • Esophageal speech: This is an alternative way of producing speech which involves swallowing air into the esophagus and then pushing it back up through the throat and mouth.
  • Tracheoesophegeal (TEP) speech: In order to perform TEP speech, the head and neck surgeons must create a small opening between the esophagus and the trachea and place a small one-way valve there. This procedure is called tracheoesophageal puncture. The valve keeps food out of the trachea but allows air into the esophagus to allow people to use their voice.

Management of Head and Neck Lymphedema

Head and neck lymphedema is a very common late side effect of treatment for head and neck cancer. It is a condition with potentially severe implications for quality of life. The gold standard treatment for lymphedema is complete decongestive therapy. Therapy is provided by certified therapists, and includes manual lymphatic drainage, compression (bandages / garments), exercise program, and education on skin care and infection precautions. Patient education also includes self-massage guidance, and flare-up prevention practices.


Speech Language Pathology Locations

Balance Center
988 Silas Deane Highway Rehab Suite
Wethersfield, CT 06109
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Balance & Falls
Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Concussion
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Headache Management
Physical Therapy
Prosthetic Training
Speech Therapy (adult)
Vestibular Rehabilitation
111 Salem Turnpike
Norwich, CT 06360
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Balance & Falls
Cancer Rehabilitation
Hand Therapy
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Lymphedema Therapy
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Neuro Conditions
Occupational Therapy
Pain Management
Pelvic Health
Physiatry
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Surgical Weight Loss Rehab
Swallowing Evaluation
280 South Main Street
Cheshire, CT 06410
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Balance & Falls
Concussion
Headache Management
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Neuro Conditions
Physiatry
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Swallowing Evaluation
Thoracic Rehabilitation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
35 Talcottville Road
Vernon, CT 06066
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Balance & Falls
Concussion
Hand Therapy
Headache Management
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Neuro Conditions
Physiatry
Physical Therapy
Prosthetic Training
Speech Therapy (adult)
Swallowing Evaluation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
1064 East Main Street
Meriden, CT 06450
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Balance & Falls
Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Cancer Rehabilitation
Concussion
Hand Therapy
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Headache Management
Lymphedema Therapy
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Neuro Conditions
Occupational Therapy
Pain Management
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Sports Medicine
Swallowing Evaluation
Thoracic Rehabilitation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
Bishop's Corner
334 North Main Street
West Hartford, CT 06117
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Balance & Falls
Concussion
Female Incontinence
Hand Therapy
Headache Management
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Neuro Conditions
Occupational Therapy
Physical Therapy
Pilates-Based Rehab
Prosthetic Training
Speech Therapy (adult)
Sports Medicine
Swallowing Evaluation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
Blue Back Square
65 Memorial Road
West Hartford, CT 06107
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Aquatic Therapy
Audiology
Balance & Falls
Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Cancer Rehabilitation
Concussion
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Headache Management
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Pain Management
Physiatry
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Sports Medicine
Swallowing Evaluation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
The Hospital of Central Connecticut
183 North Mountain Road
New Britain, CT 06053
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Balance & Falls
Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Cancer Rehabilitation
Dry Needling
Female Pelvic Pain
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Headache Management
Lymphedema Therapy
Pelvic Health
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
1025 Silas Deane Highway
Wethersfield, CT 06109
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Balance & Falls
Concussion
Dry Needling
Hand Therapy
Headache Management
Occupational Therapy
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Sports Medicine
Swallowing Evaluation
Thoracic Rehabilitation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
The Hospital of Central Connecticut (New Britain General Campus)
100 Grand Street
New Britain, CT 06050
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Balance & Falls
Complex Spine
Dry Needling
Hand Therapy
Headache Management
Lymphedema Therapy
Occupational Therapy
Pain Management
Physiatry
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Surgical Weight Loss Rehab
Thoracic Rehabilitation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
Family Health Center
5 Founders Street
Willimantic, CT 06226
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Balance & Falls
Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Hand Therapy
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Headache Management
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Speech Therapy (adult)
Sports Medicine
Swallowing Evaluation
Thoracic Rehabilitation
Jefferson House
1 John H. Stewart Drive
Newington, CT 06111
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Balance & Falls
Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Cancer Rehabilitation
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Lymphedema Therapy
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Occupational Therapy
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Sky Top
1012 East Main Street
Torrington, CT 06790
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Balance & Falls
Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Cancer Rehabilitation
Complex Spine
Concussion
Dry Needling
Hand Therapy
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Lymphedema Therapy
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Neuro Conditions
Occupational Therapy
Pain Management
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Sports Medicine
Swallowing Evaluation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
100 Perkins Farm Drive Suite 201
Mystic, CT 06355
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Balance & Falls
Cancer Rehabilitation
Complex Spine
Concussion
Hand Therapy
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Occupational Therapy
Pain Management
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Swallowing Evaluation
Thoracic Rehabilitation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
40 Loeffler Road
Bloomfield, CT 06002
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Aquatic Therapy
Cognitive Assessment
Cognitive Re-training
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Neuro Conditions
Occupational Therapy
Orthopedic Musculoskeletal Conditions
Physical Therapy
Safe Steps
Speech Therapy (adult)
Stroke
Swallowing Evaluation
Vestibular Rehabilitation
Wheelchair Evaluation
190 Universal Drive North Suite 102
North Haven, CT 06473
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Balance & Falls
Brain Injury
Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Cancer Rehabilitation
Concussion
Female Incontinence
Female Pelvic Pain
Gender Affirming Rehab
Hand Therapy
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Male Incontinence
Male Pelvic Pain
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Neuro Conditions
Occupational Therapy
Pelvic Health
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Spinal Cord Injury
Stroke
3272 Main Street 2nd floor
Stratford, CT 06614
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Balance & Falls
Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Cancer Rehabilitation
Dry Needling
Female Incontinence
Female Pelvic Pain
Gender Affirming Rehab
Hand Therapy
Head & Neck Cancer Rehabilitation
Lymphedema Therapy
Male Incontinence
Male Pelvic Pain
Multi-Disciplinary (PT, OT, ST)
Neuro Conditions
Occupational Therapy
Pain Management
Physical Therapy
Speech Therapy (adult)
Sports Medicine
Thoracic Rehabilitation
Vestibular Rehabilitation