Dysphonia, also known as hoarseness, is a general term used to describe a variety of changes in voice quality. Individuals with hoarseness or voice changes that fail to resolve or improve within a 4 week period should be referred for evaluation and visualization of the larynx. Hoarseness is not normal in adults or children, and may be an indication of a serious underlying pathology. Evaluation should take place as early as possible whenever serious underlying cause is suspected, irrespective of timeframe.
A wide variety of laryngeal and extralaryngeal conditions can cause hoarseness, and there are many challenges associated with its evaluation. Early identification of symptoms, by both the patient and physician, and visualization of the larynx are mandatory for diagnosis. However, confusion surrounding the terminology of the various laryngeal lesions and inadequate laryngeal visualization contribute to the difficulty in diagnosing hoarseness. Diagnosis and treatment are frequently delayed as a result of misdiagnosis or poor awareness of early voice changes.
Management of voice disorders requires specialized knowledge and a multidisciplinary team approach.
- Muscle tension dysphonia
- Acute laryngitis
- Chronic laryngitis
- Reflux laryngitis
- Vocal fold nodule
- Vocal fold cyst
- Vocal fold polyp
- Fibrous mass
- Vocal fold scar or sulcus
- Reinke edema
- Essential tremor
- Paradoxical vocal fold motion (PVFM)
- Granuloma with/without contact ulcer
- Recurrent respiratory papilloma
- Hypokinetic dysarthria
- Unilateral vocal fold paralysis/paresis
- Bilateral vocal fold paralysis/paresis
- Adductor spasmodic dysphonia
- Abductor spasmodic dysphonia
- Vocal fold cancer
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