Vocal Cord Dysfunction

 

Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD) is a term used to describe paradoxical vocal fold motion.  In a healthy larynx, the vocal cords open to breath in and close slightly to breath out.  However, in VCD the vocal cords close each time the patient breathes in and open slightly when breathing out.  This creates a high pitched stridor, or noisy breathing from the turbulent airflow through tight vocal cords.  This condition predominantly affects females and often occurs in high achievers, those that do well in school and athletics.  It can occur spontaneously during exercise or in moments of increased anxiety.

 

Treatment of VCD is with specialized voice therapy.  Outcomes are quite satisfactory.