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Pediatric Airway, Voice and Resonance

Our Pediatric Airway, Voice and Resonance program provides a multidisciplinary approach to diagnosis, treatment and management of issues stemming from abnormalities, defects or injuries to the airway from the nose to the lungs. Offering a comprehensive and long term approach to your child’s care, our program provides patients with treatment options, including specialized surgical techniques, which are designed to repair and improve both breathing and control of voice and resonance.

Conditions treated include:

Symptoms of an airway, voice or resonance issue will display differently depending on the condition. For example, a child with nodules, cysts or polyps located on the vocal cords may suffer from a chronically hoarse voice. Even after rest, the condition may be severe enough to impact development of communication. In addition, a child suffering from a resonance issue may have liquid come out of the nose while drinking, due to the palette’s inability to close off the back of the throat.

It is important to discuss any concerns you may have with your child’s pediatrician. He or she will then be able to determine if your child should be referred to a specialist.

Diagnosis and Treatment

When diagnosing an airway, voice or resonance disorder, we implement a multidisciplinary approach, involving evaluation by both a physician and speech therapist. In the case of chronic hoarseness caused by vocal nodules, cysts or polyps, the condition can often be managed and improved over time through voice speech therapy, although surgery may still be needed. However, children often must be at least four or five to fully absorb and utilize the practices taught during speech therapy.

Should it be determined that surgery is the best course of action for your child’s needs, we offer advanced and defect directed surgery to minimize discomfort and recovery times for children.

Our surgical treatment options include: 

  • Airway reconstruction –
    • Supraglottoplasty
    • Tracheotomy
    • Laryngotracheal expansion with cartilage grafting
      • Endoscopic posterior cricoid split with cartilage grafting
    • Cricotracheal resection
    • Tracheolplasty
    • Tracheol resection
  • Defect-directed surgery for resonance disorders –
    • Sphincter pharyngoplasty
    • Pharyngeal flap
    • Facial artery musculomucosal flap (FAMM)
  • Diagnostic endoscopies, including  laryngoscopy, bronchoscopy and esophagoscopy
  • Management of airway and esophageal foreign bodies

For More Information

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 847.504.3300.