Voice Disorders Treatment Hyderabad | Vocal Cord Dysfunction | Dr. Neetu Modgil
Vocal cord dysfunction (VCD) or paradoxical vocal fold motion or vocal cord movement disorder or laryngeal dysfunction is the disorder of the vocal cord wherein the voice box or the larynx (vocal cord folds) doesn’t open properly or remain close. Vocal cords open when you breathe in or out and let you make sounds. A vocal cord disorder affects your voice and makes it difficult to breathe.
VCD causes abnormal closing of the vocal cord while breathing in.
Both vocal cord dysfunction and asthma look similar as these two disorders can make breathing troublesome. Even the signs and symptoms of these conditions such as throat hoarseness and tightness, wheezing and coughing look same.
Misdiagnosis of Vocal Cord Dysfunction
Laryngeal dysfunction is commonly misdiagnosed as asthma because its symptoms and triggers are similar. When this happens, people receiving treatment and medicines for asthma don’t get any relief. In these cases, asthma medicines’ use causes side effects as well. Some people may have both asthma and vocal cord dysfunction and thus they need treatment for both the conditions.
In any case, your ENT doctor suspects vocal cord dysfunction if your symptoms flare up and when you find it difficult to breathe in then breathe out. If your asthma medications don’t provide any relief from your symptoms, see an ENT specialist. Bronchodilators are asthma medicines (inhaled medications) that help open bronchial tubes during an asthma attack, but these medicines do not help during a vocal cord dysfunction attack. Therefore, the medicines that you take to manage your asthma won’t help you.
Symptoms of Vocal Cord Dysfunction
- Difficulty breathing
- Tight chest or throat
- Chest pain
- Feeling of suffocation
- Choking feeling
The following things can trigger vocal cord dysfunction
- Cold or flu
- Strong emotions
- Smoking / Smoke
- Postnasal drip (phlegm in the throat)
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Chemical fumes
- Strong smells
Breathing difficulty is a prominent symptom. It can also be due to several other conditions including heart disease. Therefore, you must seek emergency medical care. In case, if you have a VCD attack you cannot manage it on your own. Once the diagnosis of the condition is done, your ENT doctor will come up with a treatment and preventive care plan.
Laryngoscopy: Your ENT doctor will examine your vocal cords closely with a special instrument with a light and camera if you have trouble breathing.
Challenge test: Doctors look for active symptoms to accurately diagnose VCD. Therefore, they try to induce symptoms by making the affected person take a treadmill test or special medicine.
Vocal Cord Dysfunction Treatment
Your ENT specialist works together with your speech therapist to formulate a comprehensive and holistic therapy. In some cases, your ENT doctor also works together with a pulmonologist to treat lung infections if they are making the condition worse. Your ENT doctor may also prescribe medicines to treat allergies or acid reflux if these conditions make VCD worse. A speech therapist helps manage the symptoms and ease breathing.
Voice Disorders Treatment Hyderabad
A comprehensive treatment plan is inclusive of the following – breathing exercises, biofeedback, speech therapy, avoidance of irritants [(dust, fumes, smoke, and chemicals), and keeping oneself well hydrated]
In rare cases, if the vocal cords are completely frozen in the closed position, your ENT doctor may recommend surgery.
If you are experiencing the signs and symptoms of vocal cord dysfunction, then consult Dr. Neetu Modgil for an accurate diagnosis, prompt and effective treatment of all types of voice disorders treatment in Hyderabad.