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Immediate percutaneous medialization for acute vocal fold immobility with aspiration.

The Laryngoscope

complications, Vocal Cord Paralysis, Retrospective Studies, Middle Aged, Male, Injections, Intralesional, drug effects, Inhalation, Humans, pharmacology, administration & dosage, Hemostatics, Gelatin Sponge, Absorbable, Female, prevention & control, Deglutition Disorders, Aged, Adult

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      To determine the efficacy of immediate bedside or office percutaneous, trans-thyroidal injections of a bioabsorbable gelatin material (Gelfoam, Upjohn Co., Kalamazoo, MI) to decrease the risk of aspiration resulting from acute vocal fold immobility. Retrospective review of patients presenting with acute vocal fold immobility and aspiration or high aspiration risk at an urban, tertiary care university hospital. All patients were evaluated by videostroboscopy, functional endoscopic evaluation of swallowing (FEES), and objective voice measures. Patients with acute vocal fold immobility and evidence of aspiration on history or FEES were given the option of medialization by Gelfoam injection. Injections were performed percutaneously in the office or at the bedside under laryngoscopic guidance. FEES was repeated after injection to verify improvement in aspiration. Eleven patients underwent Gelfoam injection for treatment of aspiration and vocal fold immobility. All were significantly improved on post-injection FEES study. All patients were returned to an oral diet, avoiding the need for long-term enteral access. Percutaneous Gelfoam injections is a rapid, temporary solution to the common problem of aspiration resulting from acute vocal fold immobility.

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