Vocal Fatigue in Individuals With Unilateral Vocal Fold Paralysis: An Investigation Voice fatigue is a common complaint heard in the voice lab. It accompanies disorders of the voice attributed to overuse, pathological change, and glottic incompetence. The lack of an exact definition of vocal fatigue is widely acknowledged and it may, in fact, represent a complex of physiologic events from ... Article
Article  |   March 01, 2004
Vocal Fatigue in Individuals With Unilateral Vocal Fold Paralysis: An Investigation
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lisa Kelchner
    Department of Communication, Sciences and Disorders University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH
    The Blaine Block Institute for Voice Analysis and Rehabilitation, Dayton, OH
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Voice Disorders / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Articles
Article   |   March 01, 2004
Vocal Fatigue in Individuals With Unilateral Vocal Fold Paralysis: An Investigation
SIG 3 Perspectives on Voice and Voice Disorders, March 2004, Vol. 14, 13-15. doi:10.1044/vvd14.1.13
SIG 3 Perspectives on Voice and Voice Disorders, March 2004, Vol. 14, 13-15. doi:10.1044/vvd14.1.13
Voice fatigue is a common complaint heard in the voice lab. It accompanies disorders of the voice attributed to overuse, pathological change, and glottic incompetence. The lack of an exact definition of vocal fatigue is widely acknowledged and it may, in fact, represent a complex of physiologic events from multiple systems (e.g., pulmonary, central nervous system; Kitch & Oates, 1993; Titze, 1994). Numerous investigators have sought to better understand this particular complaint in hopes to isolate its features (Geifer, Andrews, & Schmidt, 1991; Stemple, Stanley, & Lee, 1995).
The types of individuals who report vocal fatigue are well known. Professional voice users, such as teachers and singers, often report vocal fatigue as the result of their vocally demanding occupations. In fact, vocal fatigue has been studied the most in singers, teachers, and individuals with healthy voices. Protocol methods have varied, but many of the investigations have used prolonged loud reading as the vocally stressful task intended to induce fatigue. Results of those studies have offered a range of descriptive findings, but statistically the data are equivocal (Geifer et al., 1991; Geifer, Andrews, & Schmidt, 1996; Stemple et al., 1995). If attempting to induce and study vocal fatigue in healthy voices did not yield compelling data, perhaps an investigation is needed to examine this symptom in the context of a voice disorder. Studying vocal fatigue in a voice disordered population could preclude the use of a prolonged loud reading protocol in order to avoid exacerbation of any underlying pathology. However, individuals diagnosed with unilateral vocal fold paralysis due to recurrent laryngeal nerve injury were one group for whom vocal fatigue was a primary complaint and participation in such a protocol was possible.
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