Korean J Otolaryngol-Head Neck Surg.  1998 Mar;41(3):338-341.

Voice Changes after Laser Assisted Uvulopalatoplasty

  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, College of Medicine, Sung Kyun Kwan University, Samsung Medical Center, Seoul, Korea. yison@smc.samsung.co.kr


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: The subject of voice change after uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) has been a challenging issue, because even minor changes in voice quality or articulation may be critical to a professional voice user. A number of studies reported on acoustic changes after UPPP; however, there has not been any reports concerning voice changes after laser assisted uvulopalatoplasty (LAUP), which is a less extensive surgery compared to UPPP. This study was performed in order to analyze changes in the voice quality and nasalance after LAUP, and to provide guidance to professonal voice users who want to have snoring surgery.
In 20 patients (11 male, 9 female) who were to undergo the LAUP surgery, we measured the first and second formants of /a/, /i/, /u/ phonations, and the nasalance in rabbit, baby and mama passage. These parameters were measured preoperatively and also one month after the operation. Postoperative changes were statistically analyzed. Any subjective voice changes were asked to be reported at the visit one month after the operation.
The second formant of /u/ phonation was significantly reduced in females. The changes in nasalance, and formants of /a/ and /i/ phonations were insignificant. No one complained of the changes in voice quality, timbre, articulation or speech.
In general, there were no postoperative changes in nasalance nor any subjective feeling about voice quality after LAUP. However, changes in formant characteristics of certain vowels warrant clinicians to be more cautious in recommending LAUP for professional voice users.


Laser assisted uvulopalatoplasty(LAUP); Voice; Professional voice user
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