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April 1958

Psychosomatic Aspects of Inspiratory Voice

Author Affiliations

San Francisco
Associate Clinical Professor, Division of Oto-Laryngology (Speech and Voice Section), Stanford University School of Medicine.

AMA Arch Otolaryngol. 1958;67(4):390-393. doi:10.1001/archotol.1958.00730010400002

Observations on inspiratory voice are rarely made in the literature on phonetics. The few published case histories describe the physiological facts and processes by which this vocal phenomenon is produced-contrary to normal phonation—on inspiration instead of expiration. As therapy the authors all give the obvious advice to retrain the patient from inspiratory phonation to an expiratory one. None of these reports pay attention to the personality of the patient who had consulted these "fact-finders" and who usually resisted their therapeutic efforts.

In previous publications I have pointed out how every transitional step between phonation on complete expiration and on complete inhalation can be used as a neurotic expression.1 Most frequently one finds under these conditions a type of exhalation which keeps the intercostal muscles in an inspiratory position. The result is often a quavering voice produced through tonus changes within the vocal cords. In vowel stuttering in children this