Dysphonia (hoarseness)

Shouting, cheering, singing, and even speaking for a long time can all lead to cases of hoarseness (dysphonia). This can also occur with a cold, flu, acid reflux, and environmental irritants. Regardless of the activity, dysphonia, commonly referred to as hoarseness, is caused by scarring, swelling, or inflammation of the vocal cords.

Dysphonia symptoms

Hoarseness is the classic symptom of dysphonia. In some individuals, the voice may be deeper than normal, or break while speaking, or even sound raspy. Some people may lose their voice altogether. Along with hoarseness, you may experience a sore throat, throat dryness, trouble swallowing, or coughing.

Voice problems can be short-term or long lasting. Chronic hoarseness may be an indication of other, more severe problems, such as polyps, vocal cord paralysis, nerve damage, vocal cord nodules, or throat cancer. Typically, most people recover from acute laryngitis within two weeks.

Evaluation and Treatment of Dysphonia

In order to diagnose your voice problem, we will discuss your symptoms, conduct a thorough examination, and may perform diagnostic tests such as an endoscopy or stroboscopy. After your evaluation is complete, the physician will then discuss treatment options which may include:

  • Speech therapy
  • Medication
  • Surgical intervention

If you are experiencing symptoms of laryngitis and would like to discuss your treatment options with a member of our voice disorder team, please call (860) 493-1950 or visit our patient portal to request an appointment.