Surgical options for post-laryngectomy Voice Restoration

Thesis and Overview

Words 1,500

Laryngeal cancer is cancer of the larynx.  If not caught early enough, the only treatment for laryngeal cancer is a laryngectomy, the total or partial removal of the larynx. Although laryngectomy removes the disease,  the patient loses his voice. The resulting disability, handicap, and distress for the patient can be devastating.  Surgical voice restoration has, in recent years, revolutionized rehabilitation for these patients. Principally, three methods have been used to achieve voice rehabilitation in these patients: artificial larynx, esophageal voice, and tracheoesophageal (TEP) voice. This research paper will discuss the effectiveness of these voice rehabilitation techniques.

Laryngeal cancer: Risk factors, incidence

The larynx is the commonest site of malignancy in the upper aerodigestive tract. In Europe, the incidence varies from more than 10/100 000 (France, Italy, Spain, Poland) to less than 3/100000 (Norway, Sweden). In the United States, 5.6/100 000 is the average figure. In the UK, where the incidence is 4/100 000, this cancer accounts for about 1% of all malignant tumors in men and for 0.2% in women, but the incidence in women is rising.[1] The tumor is a squamous cell carcinoma in over 90% of cases, and the main predisposing factors are smoking and alcohol. (Walling, 1999, p 298).

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