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I Have Vocal Nodules – Should I Have them Removed Surgically?

Vocal nodules are small blister like lesions or areas of swelling or thickening that develop on the edge of the vocal folds as a result of vocal overuse-often yelling, effortful loud talking and singing, singing outside your natural range, forceful voice production and or throat clearing i.e. repeated trauma.

Nodules occur at the point of maximum vibration of the vocal folds. They normally occur in pairs, there is never more than two and they can vary in size from the size of a pin head to a larger flatter appearance. They are usually reversible with effective voice therapy. They are more common in adult woman than men. Whereas there is a greater incidence of nodules in male children.

If the nodules are removed they may well recur unless the behaviours that caused them are addressed. There is also a risk of scarring which can permanently alter your voice and restrict singing ability. Scarring can cause permanent damage to the vocal folds.

Most vocal nodules can be eliminated through voice therapy thus making surgery unnecessary and a last resort.

Voice therapy is the treatment of choice for vocal nodules.

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