Voice and Laryngology Center
The Voice and Laryngology Center at Osborne Head and Neck Institute is focused on the care of the larynx (voice box). We understand the importance of your voice, especially if you rely on your voice for your career and livelihood. The voice can be a person’s most defining characteristic and it helps us express ourselves on a daily basis. Swallowing aids us in tasting and consuming our food, similarly important for quality of life and good health.
Our doctors are specially trained to handle a wide range of voice and swallowing disorders, and strive to offer patients the most advanced, minimally invasive treatments. These treatments are geared towards restoring the patient’s voice and swallowing abilities, and allowing them to once again enjoy activities such as eating, speaking and singing.
What is Laryngology?
Laryngology is the study of the human voice, which originates in the larynx, or “voice box.” Because the larynx is involved in breathing, speaking, and swallowing, laryngologists care for disorders of any of these functions. We have chosen to focus our practice on the evaluation, treatment, and management of the professional voice user. Professional voice users includes:
- Public speakers
- Countless others
Do I need a laryngologist (voice doctor)?
If you rely on your voice for your career, you do. A laryngologist becomes part of a voice user’s team, overseeing the maintenance of the voice, preventing vocal abuse, and helping preserve career longevity.
We strongly believe in preventative voice care, which means having an evaluation when you feel normal. This is important for two reasons:
- Knowing your baseline –
- Once you have a normal exam, we will understand your normal voice. If you later develop a problem, she will be able to make a comparison to your normal evaluation to help guide your treatment.
- Preventative fine tuning
- There may be small technical issues or warning signs of injury that you cannot perceive. Preventative exams can identify them. Correction of these issues will help prevent injury. We do screening exams before performances so she can advise if it is safe to perform and give strategies to help you have the best possible performance.
Serious professional voice users may elect to have the Elite Vocal Evaluation. This will include:
- Speaking voice analysis
- Support evaluation
- Breathing technique assessment
- Dynamic voice evaluation
- Analysis and discussion of pathology
- Reflux evaluation and treatment planning
- Lifestyle modifications
- Management of related disorders, including allergy, asthma, smoking, etc
- Coaching and education
Preventative Voice Care
Every professional voice user needs a laryngologist to provide preventative voice care. Your voice is your instrument and you need to keep it as finely tuned as if you were a pianist getting the piano tuned. This is the only way to ensure the longevity of your career.
What is preventative voice care and why do you need it?
Vocal folds are delicate structures and even the slightest injury can have serious consequences for your voice. In the long run, we believe that the best performers are those who understand that you may have to cancel one or two performances to get an extra few years of performing.
This process is made significantly easier if you and our doctors already have a relationship. This means seeing us regularly, early in your career. By getting to know you, we will be able to detect any problems earlier.
What can affect your voice?
Hoarseness is any problem with the quality of your voice. Hoarseness may be due to many different reasons. Some are reversible with time alone but others are more serious and require medical attention. Hoarseness insert link to a new page called hoarseness that lasts more than 2 weeks should be evaluated by a laryngologist. However, for the singer, hoarseness should be evaluated immediately to lessen the risk of long-term damage.
Understanding the anatomy of your voice is the best way to understand problems and injuries. There are several things that may affect how your voice feels and sounds including:
- Muscle tension
- Poor cord closure also called glottic insufficiency insert link to new page called glottic insufficiency (below)
- Vocal cord weakness (paralysis or partial paralysis/paresis)
- Vocal cord masses
Medical or Surgical?
Certain vocal conditions respond better to medical interventions. Others require surgery. A thorough exam of your voice is required to determine which group you fall in to.
Rest assured that every effort will be made to avoid surgery. If surgery is required, all precautions will be taken to ensure the best possible outcome.
If you are interested in learning more about the services offered at the Voice and Laryngology Center at OHNI, please call us today to schedule an appointment.
Virtual & Office Appointments Available