At the Feeding Clinic we care for children and adolescents with difficulties with feeding, weight gain and/or growth. We are a team of experts with experience in pediatric feeding and swallowing difficulties. At the Feeding Clinic we diagnose and treat a wide range of disorders, from seemingly simple to complex. We strive to make mealtimes easier and more enjoyable for the family, and to help children grow in a healthy way!

The team design will be based on your child’s specific feeding needs and can include a registered dietician, occupational therapist, speech therapist, pediatrician and nurse or MA.

At the appointment we all evaluate your child together, in the same room. Medical, developmental, and feeding histories will be reviewed. Your child will be weighed, measured, and a physical exam is completed. We request that your child be somewhat hungry for the appointment so we can see how your child eats. The first visit typically lasts one hour. We encourage you to bring foods your child likes and foods that are difficult for your child to eat. At the end of the visit the team will provide recommendations based on your child’s unique needs. These can include skills to work on at home, evaluations by other specialists, therapists or community-based services.

Our specialized care

We care for children and adolescents with a variety of medical diagnoses, including:

  • Autism and developmental disorders
  • Birth defects
  • Bowel surgery or disease
  • Brain injury
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Chronic lung disease
  • Cleft lip and palate
  • Complex heart disease
  • Congenital syndromes (Down Syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome)
  • Constipation
  • Difficulty gaining weight
  • Failure to thrive
  • Nerve or muscle disorders
  • Prematurity
  • Reflux or colic
  • Tracheostomy/ventilator use
  • Tube feeding (use of an NG or G-tube)

Identifying a feeding or swallowing disorder

Not sure if your child has a feeding or swallowing disorder? Common symptoms can include:

  • Breathing or color changes with feeding
  • Challenging mealtimes behaviors (running away, difficulty staying seated, crying, dysregulation)
  • Choking, coughing or gagging when eating
  • Difficulty bottle feeding
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Difficulty transitioning from bottle to solid foods
  • Difficulty using eating utensils
  • Frequent pneumonias
  • Lengthy mealtimes
  • Limiting food or drinks
  • Newly refusing food or drinks
  • Oral aversion
  • Picky eating
  • Sensation of food stuck in the throat
  • Sensory difficulties/texture limitations

Ask your PCP about a referral if you feel your child would benefit from an evaluation with the Feeding Clinic.

Your child's care team

Deanna LaBianca, DO, Pediatrician, Feeding Clinic Medical Director
Marta Vaughn, RD
Michelle Walls, SLP
Rachel Comingore, OT
Laura Graham, OT
Tara Jones, RD
Erin Cresci, SLP


Refer to Randall Children's Hospital Specialty Care 

 


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