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March 1975

Voice Rehabilitation After Laryngectomy: Results With the Use of a Hypopharyngeal Prosthesis

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Otolaryngology & Maxillofacial Surgery (Drs. Sisson, McConnel, Logemann and Yeh), and the Department of Neurology (Dr. Logemann), Northwestern University-McGaw Medical Center, Chicago.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1975;101(3):178-181. doi:10.1001/archotol.1975.00780320036008

The Northwestern voice prosthesis for laryngectomees is described. The prosthesis contains no vibrator but activates vibration of the patient's pharyngeal or upper esophageal tissue by transporting air from the tracheostoma to a fistula in the upper neck, well away from major blood vessels. The prosthesis fits directly onto the laryngectomy tube and allows the patient to breathe, speak, and cough without any manual adjustments.

The important advantage of this prosthesis is the fistula location. It can be placed at the time of original surgery and is also workable in patients who have had radiation and extensive radical surgery with total reconstruction of their gullet. The prosthesis can be used by primary total laryngectomees while learning esophageal speech or installed in those who are unable to use the electronic larynx or to learn esophageal speech. Four case studies are presented.

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