Background: Acquired dysphagia is common in patients with tracheal intubation and neurological disease, leading to increased mortality. This study aimed to ascertain the risk factors and develop a prediction model for acquired dysphagia in patients after neurosurgery.
Methods: A multicenter prospective observational study was performed on 293 patients who underwent neurosurgery. A standardized swallowing assessment was performed bedside within 24 h of extubation, and logistic regression analysis with a best subset selection strategy was performed to select predictors. A nomogram model was then established and verified.
Results: The incidence of acquired dysphagia in our study was 23.2% (68/293). Among the variables, days of neurointensive care unit (NICU) stay [odds ratio (OR), 1.433; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.141–1.882; P = 0.005], tracheal intubation duration (OR, 1.021; CI, 1.001–1.062; P = 0.175), use of a nasogastric feeding tube (OR, 9.131; CI, 1.364–62.289; P = 0.021), and Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation (APACHE)-II C score (OR, 1.709; CI, 1.421–2.148; P < 0.001) were selected as risk predictors for dysphagia and included in the nomogram model. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve was 0.980 (CI, 0.965–0.996) in the training set and 0.971 (0.937–1) in the validation set, with Brier scores of 0.045 and 0.056, respectively.
Conclusion: Patients who stay longer in the NICU, have a longer duration of tracheal intubation, require a nasogastric feeding tube, and have higher APACHE-II C scores after neurosurgery are likely to develop dysphagia. This developed model is a convenient and efficient tool for predicting the development of dysphagia.