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June 1967

Teflon in Unilateral Vocal Cord Paralysis: Preoperative and Postoperative Function Studies

Author Affiliations

Los Angeles
From the Institute of Laryngology and Voice Disorders, Inc., and the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. Dr. Yanagihara is on leave from the University of Kyoto, Japan.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1967;85(6):666-674. doi:10.1001/archotol.1967.00760040668014

IN A complete unilateral paralysis of the larynx, the affected vocal cord is frequently found in the intermediate position. These patients often develop a weak and breathy voice, due to inadequate approximation of the two vocal cords during phonation.

More than 50 years ago Brünings suggested a revolutionary treatment for these patients at a meeting of the Society of German Laryngologists.1 He recommended the injection of a foreign substance into the involved vocal cord, in an effort to move the paralyzed member to the median line and provide an effective buttress for the vibrating healthy fold. Unfortunately, the only substance available for this purpose in Brünings' time was paraffin, which has a tendency to pass from the site of the injection at body temperature. The temporary nature of the improvement and the resulting complications placed this method in disfavor for several decades.

Some ten years ago Arnold resurrected this

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