There are two types of dysphagia:
- Oropharyngeal dysphagia (“high” dysphagia) occurs when a person has difficulty moving food to the back of the mouth and starting the swallowing process. This is typically caused by a neurological problem that has weakened the nerves and muscles.
- Esophageal dysphagia (“low” dysphagia) occurs when food or liquid stops in the esophagus, usually because of a blockage or irritation.
Many conditions can produce both oropharyngeal and esophageal dysphagia.