Neurodegenerative diseases are often associated with life-threatening declines in respiratory and swallowing mechanisms. We report the case of a 70-year-old man who had postoperative dysphagia and respiratory failure that required reintubation after coronary artery bypass surgery. Impairment of the patient’s speech, swallowing, and respiratory mechanisms identified during postoperative clinical and instrumental examinations was suggestive of a neurodegenerative disease. Genetic testing confirmed a diagnosis of spinal-bulbar muscular atrophy (Kennedy disease). This case report aims toLhighlight increased morbidity in patients with undiagnosed neuromuscular disorders in the critical care setting and the benefits of vigilant postoperative monitoring and multidisciplinary involvement throughout the care of complex patients.