Aerodigestive and Feeding Disorder Program

Aerodigestive and Feeding Disorder program provides care and treatment to children and adolescents with airway, breathing and swallowing disorders caused by problems in the aerodigestive tract (throat, lungs, esophagus and stomach).

Our expert team includes specialists from pulmonary medicine, interventional pulmonology, gastroenterology, nutrition, otolaryngology, pediatric surgery, as well as speech, language and occupational therapy.

Conditions We Treat

  • Aspiration and recurrent pneumonia
  • Airway obstruction from tumors or other growths
  • Bronchomalacia, tracheomalacia and airway collapsibility
  • Chronic cough
  • Dysphagia
  • Esophageal atresia
  • Eosinophilic esophagitis
  • Gastroesophageal reflux with persistent symptoms
  • Laryngomalacia
  • Stridor
  • Stenosis of the airways (narrowing), including glottic, tracheal and bronchial
  • Tracheoesophageal fistula
  • Vocal cord dysfunction/paralysis
  • Other medically complex thoracic diseases requiring coordinated subspecialty care
Our feeding disorders team consists of gastroenterologists; nutritionist; occupational, speech and language therapists; pediatric surgery and a behaviorist. Together they provide a unified approach to treat patients with advanced feeding issues. A feeding evaluation is available for patients with the following conditions:
  • Cranial facial abnormalities
  • Developmental or neurological disorders 
  • Dysphagia
  • Failure to thrive
  • G tube or NG tube management, tube feeding dependency
  • Intestinal failure 
  • Minimal diversity in diet
  • Oral aversions: sensory & or texture issues
  • “Picky eaters”
  • TE fistula, laryngeal Cleft, vocal cord paralysis
  • Tracheotomy 

What to Expect

Prior to your child’s first visit, you will be contacted by a nurse coordinator and introduced to our team and services. At the first visit, your child will be screened by the appropriate subspecialists, his or her medical history will be taken and a physical exam performed. Additional testing, such as chest x-rays, modified barium swallow, video nasal endoscopy and pulmonary function tests, may also be done at this visit. The initial visit may take up to two hours, but follow-up appointments typically take 30 minutes per specialty visit.

After the first visit, our team will meet to discuss its findings and create a unique treatment plan for your child. The program is offered Wednesday afternoons at Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital Pediatric Specialty Center.

Our Team

Co-Director Pediatric Pulmonology: Alia Bazzy-Asaad, MD

Co-Director Interventional Bronchoscopist: Jonathan Puchalski, MD

Pediatric Gastroenterologist: Arik Alper, MD

Chief, Pediatric Surgery: Michael Caty, MD, MMM

Pediatric Surgeon: Robert Cowles, MD

Pediatric Pulmonologist: Americo E. Esquibies, MD

Pediatric Otolaryngologist: Susannah E. Hills, MD

Contact Us

Aerodigestive and Feeding Disorder Program

Mario's Story

"One month old Mario was admitted to an area hospital with a diagnosis of bronchiolitis, a lung infection that causes congestion in the small airways of the lung. He was later transferred to Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital so that he can be treated by pediatric specialists in respiratory medicine..."

Read Mario's story