Deinnervation-reinnervation surgery involves “de-innervating” or cutting the nerves that power the muscles which are spastic in spasmodic dysphonia.
Through a cut on the neck a portion of the thyroid cartilage is removed to identify these nerve branches. The nerve is cut, and to prevent re-growth this branch of the recurrent laryngeal nerve is “re-innervated” to the ansa cervicalis nerve.
This surgery is performed with a patient asleep and typically patients spend some time in the hospital in recovery. Initially a patient may experience breathy hoarseness and some difficulty swallowing items such as thin liquids. However, with time patients usually experience reversal of both.