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At ENT Associates of San Diego, we understand the challenges that voice and swallowing disorders can bring into your life. These conditions can significantly affect your ability to communicate and swallow effectively. Our team is committed to providing comprehensive care to help you manage and overcome these disorders.

Common Causes of Voice & Swallowing Disorders

Voice and swallowing disorders can stem from a variety of causes. Common factors include:

  • Vocal Cord Disorders: Such as nodules, polyps, and paralysis that affect voice quality and can disrupt normal swallowing.
  • Infections: This leads to inflammation of the throat and larynx, affecting voice and swallowing.
  • Neurological Conditions: Conditions like Parkinson’s disease or stroke can impair the muscles involved in voice and swallowing.
  • Lifestyle Choices: Including smoking and overuse of the voice, which can contribute to the development of these disorders.

Symptoms and Signs of Voice & Swallowing Disorders

Recognizing the symptoms of voice and swallowing disorders early can lead to a more effective management plan. Common signs include:

  • Hoarseness: A raspy or strained voice that can indicate vocal cord issues.
  • Difficulty Swallowing (Dysphagia): Sensations of food being stuck in the throat or pain during swallowing.
  • Pain While Speaking or Swallowing: Often signaling inflammation or infection.
  • Unexpected Weight Loss: Due to difficulties in swallowing food.

Types of Voice & Swallowing Disorders

Voice and swallowing disorders encompass a range of conditions that can affect your ability to speak and swallow. Some well-recognized disorders include:

  • Salivary Glands Disorders: Issues with the salivary glands, such as infections, stones, or tumors, can lead to dry mouth and difficulty swallowing. These disorders may also cause pain and swelling around the jaw and neck.
  • Vocal Cord Nodules and Polyps: These are benign growths on the vocal cords that are often caused by vocal strain. Nodules are typically hard, while polyps are softer and may cause a hoarse voice or a sensation of a lump in the throat.
  • Vocal Cord Paralysis: This occurs when one or both vocal cords cannot move. It can result in a breathy voice, hoarseness, and problems with swallowing, as the closure of the vocal cords is crucial for protecting the airway during swallowing.

Treatment Options for Voice & Swallowing Disorders

At ENT Associates of San Diego, we offer a range of treatment options tailored to your specific needs. Our treatments include:

Medication

Our specialists prescribe medications as a primary treatment to manage symptoms and treat underlying causes of voice and swallowing disorders. Depending on the diagnosis, medications may include:

  • Antibiotics: Used to clear infections that cause inflammation of the throat and vocal cords.
  • Anti-inflammatory Drugs: To reduce swelling and discomfort in the throat, improving both voice quality and swallowing function.
  • Steroids: Sometimes prescribed to reduce severe inflammation quickly, especially in cases of acute vocal cord damage.

Surgical Interventions

For patients with structural abnormalities or severe vocal cord disorders where non-surgical treatments are not sufficient, surgical interventions may be necessary. These procedures are performed by our experienced surgeons and may include:

  • Microlaryngeal Surgery: This is a precision surgery performed under a microscope to remove vocal cord lesions such as nodules, polyps, or cysts without damaging the surrounding vocal cord tissue.
  • Vocal Cord Injection: To improve the bulk and function of the vocal cords, materials such as collagen can be injected, which is particularly useful in cases of vocal cord paralysis or atrophy.
  • Laryngoplasty: A type of surgery that alters the cartilaginous structures of the larynx to improve voice quality and swallowing function. This is often recommended for patients with vocal cord paralysis.

Schedule a Consultation

If you’re experiencing symptoms of voice or swallowing disorders, don’t hesitate to schedule a consultation with us at ENT Associates Of San Diego. Contact us today to arrange an appointment where we can discuss your symptoms and explore the most appropriate treatment options for you.

 

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La Mesa Location

5565 Grossmont Center Dr

Bldg. 3, Suites 101 & 154

La Mesa, CA 91942

(619) 464-3353

Chula Vista Location

2060 Otay Lakes Road, Suite # 140

Chula Vista, CA 91913

(619) 482-0565