Two Cases of Bilateral Vocal Fold Mobility Impairment After LMA Use In 7 Months

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Abstract

Objectives:

To increase awareness of vocal fold mobility impairment secondary to laryngeal mask airway (LMA) use in the operating room.

Methods:

We report 2 cases of bilateral vocal fold mobility impairment after LMA use within 7 months of each other. One patient is a 52-year-old female who developed this complication after orthopedic elbow surgery. The second case is a 75-year-old male who presented after undergoing inguinal hernia repair.

Results:

The patient from the first case required a 7-day hospital stay in the SICU due to airway compromise with spontaneous resolution of right-sided vocal fold immobility and improvement of symptoms. The 75-year-old male required direct laryngoscopy and bilateral true vocal fold injection medialization to correct his bilateral vocal fold paresis causing dysphonia and aspiration of liquids.

Conclusions:

Bilateral vocal fold immobility secondary to LMA use is likely an underreported phenomenon of which otolaryngologists and anesthesiologists should be aware. Presentation may be severe, requiring hospitalization or operative intervention.

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