In-office procedures for the treatment of benign vocal fold lesions in the awake patient: A contemporary review

Hagit Shoffel-Havakuk, Babak Sadoughi, Lucian Sulica, Michael M. Johns*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Objectives: To review available information regarding in-office procedures for benign vocal fold lesions (BVFL). Methods: PubMed term search on office/awake laryngeal procedures for any of the following specific lesions: Reinke's edema (RE), polyps, nodules, varices, vocal process granuloma, and vocal fold (VF) scar. Results: In-office ablative and nonablative laser procedures have been described for BVFL, including RE, polyps, varices, and granuloma. Fiber-based lasers used include potassium titanyl phosphate, pulsed dye laser, and more recently CO2. In-office intralesional steroid injection (ISI) for BVFL targets the inflammatory process involved with the lesion and may induce regression of polyps, nodules, RE, and granuloma. Botulinum toxin-induced “voice rest” has been described as adjunctive treatment for refractory VF nodules or vocal process granuloma. Most in-office techniques for treating BVFL rely on induction of lesion regression rather than complete lesion removal, as in conventional operative microsurgery. When treating VF scarring, in-office procedures aim to alter the wound-healing process; ISI targets the inflammatory phase and angiolytic lasers target the proliferative phase. Conclusion: In-office procedures for BVFL apply new technology that can potentially lower risk and cost. Although numerous case series have shown the potential of these procedures, data that thoroughly compares outcomes with those of microlaryngoscopic techniques is needed. Laryngoscope, 129:2131–2138, 2019.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2131-2138
Number of pages8
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2019


  • In-office procedures
  • KTP
  • benign vocal fold lesions
  • laser
  • steroid injection


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