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Office-based arytenoid palpation for diagnosis of disorders of bilateral vocal fold immobility

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August 1, 2006
by Priya Krishna, MD; Clark A. Rosen, MD, FACS
Bilateral vocal fold immobility is an uncommon but serious condition with many causes. Accordingly, accurate diagnosis is essential in order to treat patients promptly and avoid long-term sequelae. Historically, diagnosis has been performed in the operating room with the patient under general anesthesia. We present the case of a patient who was diagnosed with bilateral vocal fold immobility by in-office arytenoid palpation that required only topical anesthesia of the larynx. The patient subsequently underwent appropriate treatment. In our opinion, office-based arytenoid palpation is a simple, safe, and accurate procedure for diagnosing bilateral vocal fold immobility.

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