Using Trial Vocal Fold Injection to Select Vocal Fold Scar Patients Who May Benefit From More Durable Augmentation

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Abstract

Objectives:

Clinical indications for vocal fold injection augmentation (VFI) are expanding. Prior studies demonstrate the benefit of trial VFI for select causes of glottic insufficiency. No studies have examined trial VFI for glottic insufficiency resulting from true vocal fold (TVF) scar.

Methods:

Retrospective chart review of patients who underwent trial VFI for a dominant pathology of TVF scar causing dysphonia. Patients who subsequently underwent durable augmentation were identified. The primary study outcome was the difference in Voice Handicap Index-10 (VHI-10) score from pretrial VFI to post-durable augmentation.

Results:

Twenty-eight patients underwent trial VFI for TVF scar, 22 of whom reported a positive response. Fifteen of 22 subjects who underwent durable augmentation had viable data for analysis. Mean VHI-10 improved from 26.9 to 18.6 (P < .05), for a delta VHI-10 of 8.3, or 30.9% improvement. Twelve of the 15 (80%) showed a clinically significant improvement (delta VHI-10 >5).

Conclusions:

A trial VFI is a potentially useful, low-risk procedure that appears to help the patient and clinician identify when global augmentation might improve the voice when vocal fold scar is present. Patients who reported successful trial VFI often demonstrated significant improvement in their VHI-10 after subsequent durable augmentation.

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