Hoarseness in Adults

Hoarseness refers to abnormal changes in the voice. When the volume is muted, the sound can be heard as whispered, coarse and the volume or tone of the voice may change. Voice changes are usually due to disturbances related to vocal fold. The vocal cords are in the larynx. Vocal fold vibrates during speech. It is the first step of voice. The number of these vibrations varies between 200-300/sec in women and 100-150/sec in men. During breathing, the vocal folds are opened.


Causes of Hoarseness

Voice disorders may occur due to problems in the non-laryngeal organs that function in normal voice formation or in the larynx. For normal voice formation it is necessary for the vocal cord to approach each other symmetrically along their entire length. Larger masses which are located on the free edge of the vocal cord cause air passage and snuffling.


There are some reasons for the hoarseness. Most of these patients do not cause serious health problems and they come around quickly. The most frequent cause of voice illness is "acute laryngitis". Acute laryngitis occurs because of flue and the other upper respiratory tract disease, or because of using voice wrongly such as shooting and talking away loudly. Usually within a week or two the voice returns to normal.


One of the frequent causes of hoarseness that is seen in adults is that the stomach acidic in the stomach rises to the level of the throat from the stomach to irritate the vocal fold due to the failing of the muscles where the esophagus and stomach come together. This is named as laryngopharyngeal reflux. The complaint of hoarseness is especially occurred in the morning and decreases during the day. Feeling something in the throat, feeling a foreign objects, and need of frequent hough habits are frequent symptoms of hoarseness. The most of these patients who have hoarseness because of reflux do not have stomach complaints.



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