• Symptoms of Voice Disorders

    Common symptoms of a voice disorder include:

    • Hoarseness
    • Breathy vocal quality
    • Chronic cough or excessive throat clearing
    • Vocal strain or fatigue
    • Inability to speak loudly
    • Loss of voice
    • Reduced pitch range or sudden change in overall pitch
    • Sudden or gradual change in overall vocal quality
    • Tremulous quality in the voice
    • Diplophonic (double-toned) quality
    • Decreased breath support during speech


    Hoarseness is the most common symptom of a voice disorder. Anyone who has had hoarseness for more than a week should see a doctor. In most cases, hoarseness and other voice problems are a result of vocal abuse and overuse. In some cases, however, hoarseness may be a symptom of vocal cord paralysis, neurologic disease, acid reflux, thyroid disorders or cancer. Other voice symptoms may be the result of infectious diseases, such as Lyme disease, syphilis or a fungal infection, or a symptom of previously undiagnosed asthma or lung disease. 

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