Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Voice Center - What does that mean?
A voice center is a medical facility dedicated to the care of patients with laryngeal disorders. These disorders can range from laryngeal cancer (vocal cord cancer or voice box cancer) to neurologic diseases such as Parkinson's disease, ALS, myesthenia gravis, vocal cord paralysis, etc. A voice center distinguishes itself from a traditional medical practice due to specialized personel and technology. Personal typically consists of a speech and language pathologist skilled in voice therapy, an otolaryngologist or laryngologist, and often a singing or acting voice specialist. As far as technology, the basic technologies typically consist of a videostroboscopy unit, rigid and flexible laryngoscopes, and voice analysis software. While difficult to define the advantages of a voice center vs. a traditional medical practice, the patients seem to benefit from a multidisciplinary approach to disease and improved coordination of care. It is much easier to track outcomes in a team approach, and to aim for quality improvement.