The larynx (voice box) can be affected by a number of conditions. These conditions require different treatment approaches, ranging from non-surgical, endoscopic, and finally surgical options. Laryngeal surgery is performed on the vocal folds, when other treatment options have been rendered inadequate.
Reasons for Laryngeal Surgery
The main goal of a laryngeal surgical procedure is to remove growths or masses, scarred tissue, as well as to remove collapsed vocal folds that may interfere with the normal functioning of the vocal cords. The normal opening and closing of the vocal cords is necessary for ordinary speech and breathing. Some of the conditions treated with a laryngeal surgical procedure include but not limited to:
- Vocal cord dysplasia
- Laryngeal papillomatosis
- Laryngeal cancer
- Vocal cord cysts and nodules
- Vocal cord polyps
- Vocal cord paralysis
- Reinke’s edema
Laryngeal Surgery – How It’s Performed
After a definite diagnosis of a particular laryngeal disease, whereby surgery is determined to be the best treatment option, then a laryngeal surgical procedure is recommended. The surgery is usually done under general anesthesia whereby the patient is completely asleep. The procedure is either performed endoscopically, whereby a laryngoscope is inserted through the mouth into the throat, or through an open approach with an incision through the neck.
The type of surgery for the diagnosed laryngeal disease depends on a number of factors including the location, size of the growth, type of the disease, and stage (where laryngeal cancer is involved).
Types of Laryngeal Surgery
1. Open Laryngeal Surgery
An open laryngeal surgical procedure involves making incisions through the neck. This type of approach is used to remove not only the affected area or mass, but a margin of the surrounding healthy tissue as well. The biggest advantage of the open laryngeal surgical approach is that the surgeon gets to have more enhance control of the vocal folds throughout the procedure.
2. Endoscopic Laryngeal Surgery
An endoscopic laryngeal surgery is a minimally invasive approach that doesn’t require any incisions, hence does not leave any scarring behind. During the surgery, an endoscope (laryngoscope), which is a thin tube with a light and camera attached to it, is passed through the mouth to the throat. This allows for a close, precise and accurate operation of the vocal cords. The surgical instruments are also passed through the laryngoscope to remove the diverse lesions in the larynx that are as a result of the said laryngeal disorder. An endoscopic laryngeal surgery is a day surgery procedure, or an out-patient procedure, which means the patient does not need to stay at the hospital overnight.
Risks involved in Laryngeal Surgery
Laryngeal surgery is considered a fairly safe procedure with very rare risk of complications. These very rare complications can include:
- Short-lived tingling of the tongue
- Some degree of damage to the teeth
- Momentary numbness of the tongue
At King’s College Hospital Dubai, we focus on offering an exemplary service, from initial consultation through to final diagnosis, treatment, and beyond. Our team of expert doctors and nurses are here to offer tailored management and treatment of your condition, and to answer any questions that you might have throughout your time with us. Whatever you need us for, we’re only a phone-call away.
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