Vocal Cord Paralysis


This condition occurs as a result of an interruption of nerve impulses to the larynx. Vocal cord paralysis can affect speech, allow food and liquids to enter the lungs, and create difficulty in breathing.


The exact cause of vocal cord paralysis is often not known. Some causes may include injury to the vocal cord during surgery, neck trauma, stroke, tumors and growths, inflammation or infection, and neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease.


Symptoms of vocal code paralysis may include loss of vocal pitch or strength, sensation of an object stuck in the throat, noisy or labored breathing, coughing, and choking on food or liquids when swallowing.


Treatment options for vocal cord paralysis will depend on the underlying cause. Some cases may only require voice therapy to strengthen, stretch or retrain the vocal cords. More serious cases may require surgery to reposition the vocal cords, or to create an alternative airway if the vocal cords are preventing breathing.