Voice and Swallowing (Laryngology/Bronchoesophagology)

Clearing Your Throat

Clearing Your Throat: Common Causes and Treatments for Hoarseness

Beyond the common cold, people experience hoarseness from a variety of causes.

Edward Damrose, MD, FACS, Director of the Stanford Voice Center, discusses some of these causes and treatments that address these problems.
Disorders involving the larynx, airway and upper esophagus can interfere with our ability to speak, breathe, and swallow, resulting in profound negative impact on the quality of our patients lives. The Stanford Voice and Swallowing Center offers specialized evaluation and treatment of many disorders that can affect the voice, breathing and swallowing. This includes:

  • Hoarseness
  • Vocal cord weakness or paralysis
  • Papilloma
  • Nodules, cysts, and polyps
  • Granulomas
  • Spasmodic dysphonia
  • Scarring and narrowing of the vocal cords and airway
  • Cancer of the larynx
  • Zenker's diverticulum
  • Neurologic disorders affecting speech and swallowing, such as Parkinson's disease

Many procedures and techniques in the evaluation and treatment of these disorders are available through the Stanford Voice and Swallowing Center, including:

  • Arytenoid adduction
  • Thyroplasty
  • Reinnervation of the paralyzed vocal cord
  • Laryngotracheoplasty and airway reconstruction for airway stenosis
  • Tracheal resection
  • Endoscopic treatment of Zenker's diverticulum
  • Phonosurgery for polyps, cysts, and nodules
  • Botox therapy for select laryngeal diseases, such as spasmodic dysphonia
  • Selective laryngeal nerve dennervation and reinnervation - The Berke Procedure
  • In-office collagen injections for vocal cord paralysis and bowing
  • In-office cidofovir injections for laryngeal papilloma
  • Conservation surgery for cancer of the larynx
  • Laser surgery for cancer of the larynx

Together with our staff of speech and language pathologists, other diagnostic and treatment options are available, including:

  • Complete speech and swallowing evaluations
  • Modified barium swallowing studies
  • Flexible fiberoptic evaluation of speech and swallowing
  • Transnasal esophagoscopy
  • Speech therapy
  • Swallowing therapy
  • Voice rehabilitation with the Blom/Singer prosthetic and electrolarynx

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