Vocal nodules

Small swellings or elevations found at the junction of the middle and anterior thirds of the vocal fold. They form in response to vibratory trauma, as when an individual abuses or overuses the voice. Some resolve with rest and voice therapy alone; others are proven to be irreversible over time and may raise the option of vocal fold microsurgery.

Vocal fold dysfunction (VFD), aka vocal cord dysfunction (VCD)

A [intlink id=”373″ type=”post”]nonorganic[/intlink] laryngeal disorder that manifests as breathing difficulty. Typically the individual with this disorder has failed to respond appropriately to asthma and other medicines. He or she continues to make noises that are primarily or exclusively inspiratory, in contrast to asthma. Not infrequently, individuals with VFD are treated for years as having asthma before the diagnosis of VFD is finally made.

Vocal fold bowing

A descriptive term referring to the appearance of vocal folds that are somewhat atrophied, often with some concomitant flaccidity. When the individual phonates, or puts the vocal folds together to produce voice, instead of the [intlink id=”639″ type=”post”]vocal folds[/intlink] matching in a straight line with a very small gap between them, a long, wider elliptical opening is seen between them. Correlates with a voice that tends to fade with use, is fuzzy and soft-edged, and sometimes is a little higher in pitch than normal.

Post-radiation telangiectasia

Atypical dilation of capillaries, or formation of new ones, in response to radiation. These are typically seen in the [intlink id=”288″ type=”post”]laryngopharynx[/intlink] after radiation and are a benign but sometimes impressive-looking tissue change. Often, post-radiation telangiectasia does not appear until a year or more following the end of the course of radiation.

Candida laryngitis

Infection/inflammation of the surface tissue, or mucosa, of the vocal folds caused by overgrowth of the [intlink id=”105″ type=”post”]commensal[/intlink] organism [intlink id=”80″ type=”post”]candida albicans[/intlink]. Overgrowth of the organism is potentiated by use of steroid inhalers, as for asthma; by use of broad-spectrum antibiotics; by diabetes or other mechanisms of immunosuppression on the part of the patient; or by some combination of these factors.