Novel method for the rehabilitation of the voice of patients who have undergone laryngectomy
The voice laboratory at the University of Navarre University Hospital has designed a novel and efficient protocol to evaluate and rehabilitate the voice of patients who have undergone laryngectomy. This involves a monitoring procedure based on patterns of phonatory flow. The study forms part of the PhD thesis by Dr. Francisco Vázquez de la Iglesia. The title of the work is “Physiological Bases of the Pharyngoesophageal Segment. Characterisation of the erigmophonic voice as a function of its acoustic and aerodynamic parameters”.
Total laryngectomy is a surgical technique involving the radical extirpation of the larynx in patients suffering from advanced-stage cancer. According to Dr. Vázquez, “these patients lose their capacity for oral communication, which greatly influences their quality of life. The most usual procedure for recovering the voice is the use of the esophagic voice. However, there is no diagnostic procedure enabling us to assess this quality of voice or that provides concrete rehabilitation measures that help to improve it”.
The voice laboratory at the Ear, Nose and Throat Department at Navarre University Hospital has designed a protocol based on acoustic and aerodynamic parameters involved in the esophagic voice. “We conceived and adapted a specific instrument which has enabled an objective exploration method which helps us to better understand the complex process of the esophagic voice. By means of spectrographic parameters (quality of voice) and quantitative (pressure, flow, frequency), we can objectively define the different types of esophagic voice and rehabilitate it by means of positive feedback systems”.
One of the main interesting things about this research work is its immediate application to clinical practice, suitable for both diagnosing alterations in the esophagic voice as well as facilitating its rehabilitation. Moreover, it can be used for application in other rehabilitation procedures such as phonatory prothesis, electrolarynx, or even a number of surgical procedures on the pharyngoesophageal segment.
According to Dr. Vázquez, “all patients subject to a total laryngectomy can benefit from this instrumental method, but above all those who, despite speech therapy, do not obtain a suitable esophagic voice. Currently, up to 70% of these patients do not manage to speak with an optimum voice”.
In the study, 33 patients who had undergone laryngectomy participated.
Isabel Solana García | Basque research
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.
For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...
What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.
To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...
A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes
The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....
Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through
A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...
Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision
Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...