The most common sign of laryngitis is hoarseness. Changes in your voice can vary with the degree of infection or irritation, ranging from mild hoarseness to almost total loss of your voice. If you have chronic hoarseness, your doctor may want to listen to your voice and to examine your vocal cords, and he or she may refer you to an ear, nose and throat specialist.
These techniques sometimes are used to help diagnose laryngitis:
June 28, 2012
- Laryngoscopy. Your doctor can visually examine your vocal cords in a procedure called laryngoscopy, by using a light and a tiny mirror to look into the back of your throat. Or your doctor may use fiber-optic laryngoscopy. This involves inserting a thin, flexible tube (endoscope) with a tiny camera and light through your nose or mouth and into the back of your throat. Then your doctor can watch the motion of your vocal cords as you speak.
- Biopsy. If your doctor sees a suspicious area, he or she may do a biopsy — taking a sample of tissue for examination under a microscope.
- Taking care of your voice. National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/voice/pages/takingcare.aspx. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- McPhee SJ, et al. Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment 2012. New York, N.Y.: McGraw Hill; 2010. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=2356. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- Morton DA, et al. The Big Picture: Gross Anatomy. New York, N.Y.: McGraw-Hill; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=8667745. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- Fact sheet: Common problems that can affect your voice. American Academy of Otalaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/HealthInformation/commonvoiceproblems.cfm. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- Fact sheet: The voice and aging. American Academy of Otalaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/HealthInformation/Voice-and-Aging.cfm. Accessed March 8, 2012.
- Wang AJ, et al. Comparison of patients of chronic laryngitis with and without troublesome reflux symptoms. Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. 2012;27:579.
- Longo DL, et al. Harrison's Online. 18th ed. New York, N.Y.: McGraw Hill; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=9097038. Accessed March 8, 2012.
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