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Vocal Tract Imaging

Beneficial for individuals who suffer from:

  • Hoarse, raspy or breathy voice quality
  • Increased effort when talking or singing
  • Loss of voice with no apparent illness
  • Reduced vocal ability, pitch or volume in speaking or singing
  • Fatigue - voice tires easily
  • Chronic or recurrent neck aches, headaches and throat pain, with no illness
  • Habitual throat clearing, coughing
  • Neurological disorders of the voice

New Technology

North Mississippi Medical Center's Outpatient Rehabilitation Center provides advanced technology in voice examination and treatment.

How it Works

North Mississippi Medical Center offers state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment that videotapes vocal cords using a strobe light that captures the visual image and enlarges it on a computer monitor to show in-depth detail.

Evaluations can be performed conjunctively by the otolaryngologists at Ear, Nose and Throat Physicians of North Mississippi, P.A., and NMMC's Speech Pathology team to provide interdisciplinary assessments and treatment plans, or by the speech pathologist only if referred from another otolaryngologist. The results of the evaluation are stored on videotape and a photograph of the vocal cords is available for documentation along with the written assessment.

The improved imaging allows for more accurate diagnoses of functional voice disorders and earlier detection of vocal cord/laryngeal disease because of improved visibility of the larynx and vocal cords.

Typical Patients

  • Aerobic instructors
  • Public speakers
  • Auctioneers
  • Ministers
  • Broadcasters
  • Singers
  • Cheerleaders
  • Teachers
  • Coaches

Vocal tract imaging may also be used to assess and treat deficits in palatal and pharyngeal wall movement found in neurological disorders, cleft palate or other velopharyngeal insufficiency. A Flexible Endoscopic Examination of Swallowing (FEES), which assesses the laryngeal and vocal cord functioning during swallowing, can also be performed with this equipment.

What to Expect

More efficient patient care is NMMC's ultimate goal in providing these additional services. The correct diagnosis can prevent unnecessary surgery, speed recovery and prevent complete loss of voice.

Evaluation results and ongoing progress reports are sent to the referring physician, and follow-up treatment will be recommended as necessary with a speech therapist. NMMC's Outpatient Rehabilitation Center's team can provide follow-up treatment, or refer the patient to a therapist closer to home if needed. NMMC will file Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance for our patients.

Referrals

Physician or nurse practitioner's referral is required.

For More Information

For additional information about this program or related rehabilitation services, call (662) 377-7215 or 1-800-THE-DESK (1-800-843-3375).