The portuguese version of the gugging swallowing screen

results from its application


  • Isabel de Jesus Oliveira Escola Superior de Saúde Norte da Cruz Vermelha Portuguesa, Oliveira de Azeméis, Portugal | Centro de Estudos e Investigação em Saúde da Universidade de Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal
  • Germano Rodrigues Couto Universidade Fernando Pessoa, Centro de Investigação em Tecnologias e Serviços de Saúde, Porto, Portugal
  • Alfredina Moreira Centro Hospitalar Universitário de São João, Unidade de AVC, Porto, Portugal
  • Carlos Gonçalves Centro Hospitalar Universitário de São João, Unidade de AVC, Porto, Portugal
  • Marlene Marques Unidade Local de Saúde da Guarda, Unidade de AVC, Guarda, Portugal
  • Pedro Lopes Ferreira Faculdade de Economia da Universidade de Coimbra, Centro de Estudos e Investigação em Saúde da Universidade de Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal



deglutition disorders, stroke, reproducibility of results


Introduction: Dysphagia is a frequent complication after a stroke which is associated with increased risk of pneumonia, dehydration and malnutrition. Early screening reduces the incidence of pneumonia after stroke.

Objective: To translate, cross cultural adapt and test the Portuguese version of the Gugging Swallowing Screen.

Methods: 226 acute stroke patients were prospectively enrolled in a multicentre study in stroke units. The Gugging Swallowing Screen was administered by nurses on patient’s admission. Results were compared to National Institute Health Stroke Scale and Glasgow Coma Scale scores and nurse’s clinical judgment. Inter-rater reliability was established.

Results: The incidence of dysphagia using GUSS was 47.3%. Sensitivity, specificity and the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve were, respectively, 85.4%, 84.6% and 0.892., using nurse’s clinical judgment as a reference. A significant association was established between positive screening and a higher neurological deficit (χ2=32.99; p<0.001) and no dysphagia with mild coma (χ2=15.15; p<0.001). Excellent inter-rater reliability (k=0.940) was reached.

Conclusion: The results suggest that the Portuguese version of the Gugging Swallowing Screen produces similar results as its original version, is simple to administer at bedside by nurses, is reliable and with adequate sensitivity to guide healthcare professionals in determining the need of a more comprehensive evaluation.


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How to Cite

Oliveira, I. de J., Rodrigues Couto, G., Moreira, A., Gonçalves, C. ., Marques, M., & Lopes Ferreira, P. (2021). The portuguese version of the gugging swallowing screen: results from its application . Millenium - Journal of Education, Technologies, and Health, 2(16), 93–101.



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