IDDSI: The Plot Thickens (On-Demand).

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IDDSI Framework image.


IDDSI: The Plot Thickens!


Nectar and Honey are OUT. The confusing, subjective terminology that has plagued our professions for so long is finally being replaced by a well-thought-out, universally objective framework.

The International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative (IDDSI) framework is being implemented in many different countries around the world and Dysphagia Therapists and Dietitians need to know what it’s all about. Come learn about the amazing job this group did coming up with a standardized tool for describing different food and drink consistencies that is” culturally sensitive, measurable and applicable to individuals of all age groups in all care settings” (Can you imagine being tasked with THAT job??) Well, this tool is fantastic, and it is changing the way we document assessment and treatment of dysphagia across all settings around the world.

You will learn the new terms for Thickness levels 0-7, the research behind them and how to test for them. Yes, be prepared to mix, play with, and identify all 8 different levels in the framework, so that you’ll have a thorough, experientially sound understanding of the IDDSI framework and be able to use it in any workplace environment.

But we will also discuss the pros and cons of various thickeners, their ingredients (and why that is important), research on the variables that can affect the viscosity achieved, and the reliability of the VFSS results in predicting the amount of thickening that might be helpful. There are important, though rarely discussed ramifications of thickening beyond its effects on the actual swallow, including the respiratory and gastrointestinal systems and hydration.

You’ll be privy to information from discussions with the FDA and Thickener manufacturers regarding the use of Simply Thick®, Gelmix®, Carobel®, and rice cereal. You’ll learn alternatives to thickening such as various feeding positions and use of different nipples, cups, and feeding utensils and when these should be considered.

Using Powerpoint presentation, lecture, discussion, and hands-on practice with the BD 10ml syringes and different food and liquid consistencies, you’ll feel confident using this new system and knowing when to use thickeners and when not to.


Key Learning Outcomes:

As a result of this presentation, the participant will be able to:

  1. Explain the purpose of the International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative.
  2. Discuss Descriptors, Testing Methods, and evidence from research.
  3. Use the standardized testing methods to identify and produce liquids and foods from Levels 0-7.
  4. Describe possible complications of using thickeners.
  5. Discuss the pros and cons of various thickeners available.
  6. List the possible alternatives to thickening and when they might be appropriate.



4 hours



0:00 – 0:10 History of thickening in dysphagia treatment
0:10 – 0:40 Types of Thickeners, their ingredients and pros/cons of each
0:40 – 1:15 Possible complications, efficacy research
1:15 – 1:45 Alternatives to thickening
1:45 – 2:00 Break
2:00 – 2:15 The International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative (IDDSI)
2:15 – 3:00 Descriptors, Testing Methods, Evidence from Research
3:00 – 4:15 Hands-on practice making and identifying different thicknesses
(4 Hours Education; 0.25 hours break time.)



Presenter Disclosures:

Financial: Jennifer Meyer is a co-owner of CEU-Espresso, Inc. and was paid an honorarium for this presentation. She owns a private practice, Feeding and Dysphagia Resources, P. C. in Denton, TX
Non-financial: Jennifer is a personal friend of the developer of the Res-Q Infant Wedge, sometimes mentioned in her presentations.

Sponsor Disclosure:

This course is presented by CEU-Espresso, Inc.

Content Disclosure:

This learning event does not focus exclusively on any specific product or service.


We really want you to be able to learn this material, not just breeze through it to take a quiz and say you’ve learned something but forget it by the time you are in front of your next patient or client. So, you will have access to this material for 6 months (180 days) from your registration date. You will be able to download any course resources and stream the video as much as you wish during that time to review the information. We just ask that you not share the handout or other materials with anyone who hasn’t registered for their own access to the course.


Course Content