Don't let medical terminology scare you off, we will explain all terminology and procedures to your satisfaction.
ORAL (mouth-tongue) DISORDERS
There are a multitude of benign, malignant, infectious and medical causes that can affect the appearance, sensation and function of the oral cavity. Only through a very accurate history and physical examination by a qualified physician can an accurate diagnosis and treatment be made.
Pharyngitis/Stomatitis/Glossitis- acute and chronic swelling, both painful and asymptomatic may affect the oral mucosa (lining). Some of the causes are listed below.
Viral infections • Bacterial infections • Allergic reactions • Acid reflux • Alcohol/tobacco • Stress • Hormonal changes • Vitamin deficiency • Mouth breathing • Poor dental hygiene (caries) • Leukoplakia (white plaques) • Benign and Malignant tumors • Leukemia • Denture ware (ill-fitting)
Hoarseness is any unnatural deepening and harsh quality of the voice. Only normal functioning vocal cords are capable of producing the sharp and crisp vocal quality of a normal voice.
Hoarseness may occur acutely and is frequently associated with a virus or a cold. It usually is self-limiting and requires little treatment other than rest. When hoarseness worsens or prolongs, a thorough ENT exam should be sought to determine the cause.
Causes of Hoarseness
- Abuse (singers, auctioneers, mothers)
- Allergies (throat clearing)
- Bronchitis (chronic coughing)
- Sinusitis (infections, drainage)
- Acid Reflux (hiatal hernia)
- Tumors (benign and malignant) of the throat and neck
- Vocal cord nodules/polyps
- Vocal cord paralysis/weakness from tumors or neurological problems
- Tobacco/alcohol (irritants)
- Rhumatoid arthritis
Visualization of the vocal cords is mandatory for proper evaluation of hoarseness and may be accomplished in the office via a head light and laryngeal mirror or a flexible nasopharyngoscope. If this is not well tolerated and or reveals suspicious findings, a direct laryngoscopic examination under general anesthesia is recommended. Other diagnostic tests aiding laryngeal function evaluation are:
- Barium swallow,
- CT scan,
- MRI of neck and chest.
Any persistent hoarseness or changing voice quality necessitates an accurate assessment by a qualified ENT specialist.
The Ear | The Nose | Cosmetic Surgery
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