A granuloma of the vocal fold, or a vocal process granuloma, is an inflammatory lesion. These lesions typically occur on the back, or posterior, portion of the vocal folds.
Causes of a vocal fold granuloma may include:
- Chronic voice overuse
- Voice misuse
- Intubation – placement of a breathing tube through the vocal folds can cause formation of granulomas
- Vocal fold weakness – with strain, vocal process granuloma can occur
Symptoms of granulomas include:
- Rough voice
- Vocal fatigue, or tiring with overuse
- Chronic cough
- Tickle in the throat
Diangosis of granuloma is made during laryngoscopy and stroboscopy.
Granulomas on both vocal folds are noted. This occurred after this patient was intubated for a short period of time. Steroid injections were necessary to reduce the size of these growths.
Treatment for Granuloma:
A vocal fold granuloma is first treated with voice rest, often times for weeks. This causes less stress on the vocal folds, allowing granulomas to heal.
A steroid injection into the granuloma may help decrease the size of the granuloma. This may be performed as an in-office procedure.
During surgery a granuloma may be easily removed. However, granulomas often quickly recur despite excision – thus surgery is reserved only in cases where a granuloma is large enough to cause shortness of breath.