Non-cancerous conditions of the larynx
A non-cancerous (benign) condition of the larynx is a change to laryngeal cells, but it is not cancer. Non-cancerous conditions do not spread (metastasize) to other parts of the body and are not usually life-threatening.
Non-cancerous conditions of the larynx include:
- vocal cord nodules
- contact granulomas
- vocal cord cysts
- vocal cord polyps
- laryngeal papillomatosis
Risk factors @(Model.HeadingTag)>
The following risk factors increase your chance of developing a non-cancerous condition of the larynx:
- overuse or misuse of the voice (such as excessive speaking or singing, speaking in an improper pitch or constant shouting)
- acid reflux
- postnasal drip
- inhaling irritants
- constant coughing
HPV infection increases the risk for laryngeal papillomatosis.
The symptoms of non-cancerous conditions of the larynx include:
- a weak or breathy voice
- trouble breathing
- noisy breathing
- pain when swallowing or speaking
If you have symptoms or your doctor thinks you might have a non-cancerous condition, you will be sent for tests. Tests used to diagnose or rule out non-cancerous conditions or laryngeal cancer include:
- a physical exam
- a laryngoscopy
- a biopsy
Treatment options for non-cancerous conditions of the larynx include:
- avoiding the cause such as smoking, loud speaking or improper singing
- voice therapy
- medicines to reduce acid reflux
- surgical removal
American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery. Nodules, Polyps, and Cysts. http://www.entnet.org/content/nodules-polyps-and-cysts.
Cancer Research UK. Types of laryngeal cancer. Cancer Research UK; 2015: http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/type/larynx-cancer/about/types-of-laryngeal-cancer.
Mendenhall WM, Werning JW, Pfister DG . Cancer of the head and neck. DeVita VT Jr, Lawrence TS, & Rosenberg SA. Cancer: Principles and Practice of Oncology. 10th ed. Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer Health/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2015: 38: 422-473.
Sasaki CT . Overview of laryngeal disorders. Beers, M. H., & Berkow, R., (Eds.). Merck Manual Professional Edition. 2016: https://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/ear,-nose,-and-throat-disorders/laryngeal-disorders/overview-of-laryngeal-disorders.