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Vocal Health Issues for Inner City Children Include Hoarseness

by Rajashri on October 5, 2009 at 9:12 PM
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 Vocal Health Issues for Inner City Children Include Hoarseness

The chief complaint of patients in an inner city pediatric voice clinic is hoarseness, which is also a common and widespread vocal health issue.

In a paper presented at the 2009 American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) Annual Meeting & OTO EXPO in San Diego, researchers evaluated a database of voice patients from August 2003 to June 2008 in a tertiary care children's hospital voice clinic. Data were reviewed for demographics, medical history, voice analysis, treatment, and prevalence of vocal pathologies.

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A total of 227 patients were studied. Mean age was 7 years; 53 percent were male. Of the 317 diagnoses made, they included: vocal nodules (42 %), gastroesophageal reflux (10%), hyperfunction (6 %), velo-pharyngeal insufficiency (5 %), and edema (5 %), and no pathology (7%). Sixty-six percent had a chief complaint of hoarseness and 77 percent of these had vocal nodules.

The authors noted that 23 percent of patients with vocal nodules did not present with a complaint of hoarseness, but presented with other subjective complaints. Thus, in a quarter of the patients, vocal nodules presented with other symptoms than hoarseness. This finding supports the role of laryngeal examination in all pediatric patients with vocal nodules.
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Seven percent of patients had no pathology on exam. These patients presented with subjective vocal abnormalities and had a higher mean age (10.29 yrs) compared to those who had pathology. The authors suggested further studies to examine the possible age-related and/or environmental components to their subjective complaints.



Source: Eurekalert
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