Effects of Voice Therapy on Vocal Tract Discomfort in Muscle Tension Dysphonia

Document Type : Original


1 Department of Speech and Language Pathology, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

2 Department of Physical Therapy, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

3 Otolaryngology Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Science, Tehran, Iran.

4 Department of Basic Sciences in Rehabilitation, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.


Patients with muscle tension dysphonia (MTD) suffer from several physical discomforts in their vocal tract. However, few studies have examined the effects of voice therapy (VT) on the vocal tract discomfort (VTD) in patients with voice disorders. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of VT on the VTD in patients with MTD.
Materials and Methods:
This study was carried out on 25 subjects with MTD, including 5 men and 20 women, with the mean age of 37.20±5.70 years. The participants underwent 10 consecutive sessions of VT twice a week. The acoustic voice analysis, auditory-perceptual assessment, and the Persian version of the vocal tract discomfort (VTDp) scale were used to compare the pre- and post-treatment results.
After VT, significant improvements were observed in the acoustic characteristics, including jitter, shimmer, and harmonics-to-noise ratio (P<0.05). Regarding the auditory-perceptual assessment, a significant reduction was noticed in the overall severity, roughness, and breathiness (P<0.05). Moreover, VT led to a significant reduction in all the items of the VTDp, including burn, tightness, dryness, pain, tickling, soreness, irritability, and lump in the throat, after VT in both frequency and severity sections of the VTDp scale (P<0.05).
The results of the present study showed that VT can be effective in reducing the frequency and severity of the VTD in patients with MTD in addition to improving voice quality.


Main Subjects

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