Treatment of velopharyngeal insufficiency

Abraham Amir, Ram Silfen, Daniel J. Hauben

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Weak and hypernasal speech, along with nasal escape of air, are the main characteristics of velo-pharyngeal incompetence (VPI). We describe 10 years of experience (1989-1998) with surgical treatment of VPI. 51 patients underwent pharyngeal flap elevation. 37 had cleft palate (8 of them submucous), 7 had neuromuscular disorders and another 7 were idiopathic. All underwent evaluation by a speech therapist before and after operation. 25 had further nasal endoscopy and/or videofluroscopy. There was significant speech improvement in volume and clarity in 35 (73%), mild improvement in 13 (27%) and none in 3. The complication rate was 15% and included sleep apnea, wound infection and dehiscence, stridor and bleeding. Complications were correlated with advanced age. VPI should be diagnosed as early as possible to achieve good results and to prevent social problems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)357-361
Number of pages5
JournalHarefuah
Volume137
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes

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