When hoarse, a voice may sound raspy, breathy, strained, or show changes in pitch or volume. Voice changes may be related to disorders of the vocal folds of the larynx. Your voice is created by vocal folds coming together as air leaves lungs, they vibrate, producing sound. Different factors like swelling or lumps may hinder this vibration, altering the voice as described above.

Causes of Hoarseness may include:

  • Acute Laryngitis
  • Voice misuse
  • Benign Vocal Cord Lesions
  • Vocal Hemorrhage
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux (GERD)
  • Laryngopharyngeal Reflux (LPRD)
  • Smoking
  • Neurological Disorders/paralyzed vocal folds

You should consider seeing an ENT Specialists provider if you observe hoarseness lasting more than three weeks, if you are coughing up blood, have difficulty swallowing, notice a lump in the neck, experience pain when speaking or swallowing, difficulty breathing, or if hoarseness interferes with your livelihood. Your provider will determine the cause of hoarseness and make recommendations based on the cause.