Complex posterior arytenoid dislocation

May 7, 2014
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Laryngoscopic Clinic

Arytenoid cartilage dislocation is an uncommon entity that is frequently misdiagnosed as vocal fold paresis or paralysis. The most common cause of dislocation is endotracheal intubation injury.

A 42-year-old man fell 15 feet from a porch, sustained hypoxic brain injury, and underwent a tracheotomy after 4 weeks of intubation. He was aphonic after decannulation and was diagnosed with “vocal fold paralysis.” He was treated twice by another physician with calcium hydroxylapatite injection into the immobile vocal fold, but his aphonia persisted. He was sent to us for a second opinion. Strobovideolaryngoscopy revealed findings consistent with complex posterior arytenoid dislocation (figure 1).

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