Irritable Larynx Syndrome: Case Studies Irritable Larynx Syndrome (ILS; Morrison, Rammage, & Emami,1999), comprised of a continuum of disorders from chronic throat clearing/chronic cough to paradoxical vocal fold motion (PVFM) and laryngospasm, is a complex, heterogeneous disorder (Mathers-Schmidt, 2001). Florence Blager was the first to describe behavioral treatment for PVFM, also described as vocal ... Article
Article  |   March 01, 2006
Irritable Larynx Syndrome: Case Studies
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Mary Sandage
    Auburn University, Auburn, AL
Article Information
Swallowing, Dysphagia & Feeding Disorders / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Articles
Article   |   March 01, 2006
Irritable Larynx Syndrome: Case Studies
SIG 3 Perspectives on Voice and Voice Disorders, March 2006, Vol. 16, 3-6. doi:10.1044/vvd16.1.3
SIG 3 Perspectives on Voice and Voice Disorders, March 2006, Vol. 16, 3-6. doi:10.1044/vvd16.1.3
Irritable Larynx Syndrome (ILS; Morrison, Rammage, & Emami,1999), comprised of a continuum of disorders from chronic throat clearing/chronic cough to paradoxical vocal fold motion (PVFM) and laryngospasm, is a complex, heterogeneous disorder (Mathers-Schmidt, 2001). Florence Blager was the first to describe behavioral treatment for PVFM, also described as vocal cord dysfunction (VCD), and habit cough (Blager, Gay, & Wood, 1988). Successful management and reduction/elimination of symptoms requires extensive knowledge of the likely triggers, appropriate medical work-up (Morice et al., 2004; Irwin et al., 1998) and reasonable behavioral modifications. Chronic cough and PVFM can affect individuals from infancy (Heatley & Swift, 1996; Maschka et al.,1997) to the elderly with most reported cases of PVFM falling between the ages of 10 and 40 years old (Kuppersmith, Rosen, & Wiatrak, 1993). Primary triggers for this disorder include psychological conditions, upper airway sensitivity to laryngeal irritants, and various neurological etiologies, including laryngeal dystonia (Mathers-Schmidt). Neurological etiologies for PVFM are rare (Maschka et al.; Worley, Witsell, & Hulka, 2003) and should always be considered in the medical and behavioral assessment for these disorders, as for most of the cases that are neurological in nature, medical intervention is required and behavioral methods will offer little or no benefit.
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