Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Voice Disorders Classic Diagnosis: Vocal Cords Acid Reflux and/or Muscle Tension Dysphonia? Go Figure!!!
Lately, more and more voice issues sufferers are coming to me with the most, seem to be, common diagnosis, such as vocal cords acid reflux and muscle tension dysphonia. Why those two, you may ask?
Are there any other vocal problems which people also experience? Of course there are! The rest of them are much more so obvious; those like nodes, nodules, polyps, etc.
But what appears to be interesting that if the person, let’s say with the hoarse/raspy voice, is not diagnosed with any growth on their vocal cords, he/she is immediately labelled with one or the other diagnosis; either gastric acid reflux which is burning the sufferer’s vocal cords, or muscle tension dysphonia, which effects primarily the neck muscles, and also could be connected to the acid reflux and fibromyalgia. So, mainly, the conventional doctors are implementing the method of elimination.
In other words, if there is nothing obvious they could detect, they offer the generic and most common diagnosis, such as described above. How pathetic is that?
A lot of my voice repair clients came with the diagnosis of the acid reflux and obeying the doctor’s orders; they took all kinds of anti-acids, changed their diets, and did not, unfortunately, accomplish any results. Their voices were still hoarse and raspy and they still did not know how to properly speak or sing.
Yes, in some cases, they could have been affected by acid reflux, but it was not the main cause of their voice problem. It was just a side effect, as their voice was drawn in a very low position, via wrong speaking or singing and via an enormous pressure which was applied to their vocal box.
Once the voice is sitting low in its position (sounding very throaty and heavy), it will no doubt meet the gastric acid and, evidently, the vocal cords will get burned. So the approach to the vocal problem has to be completely holistic.
I was speaking today with a US client who had been diagnosed with Reinke's Edema (smoker’s disease). She was offered an operation instead of recommendation of stopping smoking, cleansing her body completely from the toxins, building the strength of her vocal anatomy and learning how to speak properly without putting an enormous pressure on her vocal cords and larynx.
Even if she agreed to do the surgery, without the changes described above, it would be completely obsolete, as all of her symptoms will come back in full force in a short period of time.
There is no change without change and the surgery is not one of them. However, in some cases, the surgical interference is a must, but my recommendation would be to try everything possible and impossible (so to speak), Non-Surgically first!
After all, what do you have to lose? If nothing else, you will have knowledge and understanding to gain and then come to the write decision with God’s blessings.