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October 1968

Tracheopharyngeal Shunt After Total Laryngectomy

Author Affiliations

From the Cleveland Clinic (Dr. Porres) and the ENT Division, Department of Surgery, St. Vincent's Charity Hospital (Dr. Mersol), Cleveland. Dr. Porres is now in Roanoke, Va.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1968;88(4):413-418. doi:10.1001/archotol.1968.00770010415014

SPEECH as such is entirely possible without a larynx as evidenced by the possibilities of well developed voices in persons who have had total laryngectomies. Sounds as they emanate from the larynx are not at all the sounds we hear emanating from the mouth. They are feeble and without resonance or timbre, requiring modification in the upper respiratory tracts before becoming vocal tones as we know them. Laryngeal tones, however, do present the element of fundamental pitch in its final form but this is practically the only element which is solely dependent upon laryngeal function.1

The larynx, therefore, is a tone producing organ furnishing raw material in the form of sound which is modified into the human voice by the various resonating chambers above the larynx itself. This sound ultimately converted into speech by the action of the pharynx, tongue, lips, palate, and related structures.2 However, this conversion