Model for the functional instruction of swallowing

Takahiro Satoda, Saiji Shimoe, Seicho Makihira, Mitsuhiro Tamamoto, Takeshi Murayama, Hiroki Nikawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


It is difficult to teach students about the mechanism of swallowing. There are three phases of swallowing; oral phase, pharyngeal phase and esophageal phase. The bolus of food is propelled to back of mouth by the tongue and the swallowing reflex happens. After nasopharynx and mouth closure, the glottal closure occurs, then hyoid and larynx are lifted by the contractions of suprahyoid and thyrohyoid muscles. As for the epiglottis, it is compressed by the tongue and inclines downward. As the larynx is lifted upward and anteriorly, slight vacuum is caused in the lower pharynx and upper esophagus at the same time, and pharyngeal constrictor compress bolus, therefore, the bolus passes the piriform fossa, and is inhaled into the esophagus. This time, we made a model in order to explain this complicated mechanism. The mandible is made of paper clay by using a metallic plate in it. The tongue, the soft palate, and the epiglottis are made by using the EVA (Ethylene Vinyl Acetate) sheet. Styloglossus, suprahyoid, thyrohyoid muscles are made with the wire. Moreover, a movable wooden chip represents the contraction of the pharyngeal constrictor muscles. The spring is put in the trachea in order to lift the larynx. The upper part of esophageal constrictor is made with spring plates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-57
Number of pages7
JournalKaibogaku zasshi. Journal of anatomy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2008
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)


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