Friday, December 12, 2014

Nodules / Polyps / Cysts

I have had 5 surgeries to remove remove polyps from my vocal cords and will have my 6th surgery on Dec 3rd. I have had 3 different doctors during the surgeries. My last surgery was done at UNC in Durham, NC, in June, 2014, and my upcoming surgery will be done at the the same hospital. The 5 previous biopsy have no signs of cancer. My question is should I continue having surgery to remove the polyps if they continue to return?

Melissa Kim, M.S., CCC-SLP writes... 
This is a question that would only be able to be answered by your surgeon; I would recommend that seek out a second opinion if you don't feel as though your physicians have thoroughly addressed your concerns.

Good luck to you!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Son Loses Voice Often

My 11-year-old son loses his voice often. It started about 3 years ago. If he goes to camp, outdoor activities with groups of people, or anything that involves talking a lot or playing loud, he'll lose his voice. I took him to the doctor, who said probably nodules, and to try and keep him from talking when they get inflamed. My question is, if this continues, could this damage his voice for good? Are there any new signs I should watch for? I hate to see what it is going to sound like when he goes through the change.

Melissa Kim, M.S., CCC-SLP writes...

There are no "new" symptoms to look for... symptoms of nodules include hoarse, breathy vocal quality and a tendency to "lose" the voice with excessive use. I would suggest that you ask your physician for a referral to a speech pathologist. Voice therapy can often successfully resolve, or at least reduce, the nodules so that vocal quality and endurance improves.

Thank you for your question.