Presenting Cures: An Abstract

At the 1998 Pacific Voice conference I presented cures of Spastic and Spasmodic Dysphonia (SD) by Direct Voice Rehabilitation (DVR). I presented cures of people who had been diagnosed with the most severe Spastic Dysphonia by the UCLA Medical Center Head and Neck Division.

The SD diagnoses were made by the Medical Center’s experienced physicians, including my colleague, Paul Ward, M.D. who was chairman of the Medical Center Head and Neck Division, preceding the present chairman, Gerald Berke, M.D., another colleague.

Hmmm, is there a cure for Spasmodic Dysphonia?

If you agree with Mort Cooper, Ph.D., by mouthing a reflexive "uh huh," you’re bound to receive a pat on the back for good vocal delivery.

"That's putting the voice in the lips and the nose where it belongs," says the Los Angeles-based speech-language pathologist and voice specialist. "You've got to get it out of the lower throat and into the 'mask'."

Few members of the medical community agree with Dr. Cooper, however, when it comes to diagnosing and treating spasmodic dysphonia, an involuntary movement of the vocal cords commonly referred to as "strangled voice."

An Open Letter sent to 14,300 Ear, Nose and Throat Doctors

Dear Colleague:

As you may be aware, I have demonstrated for many years that my exclusive non-invasive technique called Direct Voice Rehabilitation (DVR) can achieve dramatic results with spasmodic dysphonia (SD). This includes not only improvement or recovery but also cures. I’m writing to bring these results to your attention in the hope that you may find this information useful in your own practice as an alternative to invasive approaches.

Not With My Wife You Don't

An ENT professor on the UCLA Medical Faculty in the Head and Neck Division referred his wife who was diagnosed with Spasmodic Dysphonia (SD) outside the medical center to Dr. Mort Cooper's private practice. She regained a normal voice through Direct Voice Rehabilitation (DVR). Today the UCLA Medical Center offers only Botox or surgery for SD patients without affording them the option of DVR. But not with my wife, you don't. Double standard?

When Paradigms Fail

Since Traube's discovery of "the strangled voice" in 1871, the medical community hasn't offered a single cure in nearly 130 years, preferring to attribute spasmodic dysphonia to arcane neurological and psychiatric explanations. Early on in their medical training, physicians are told to show deference to Occam's razor by giving practical explanations without undue mystification.

DVR Provides Hope for a "Hopeless" Condition

Spasmodic dysphonia (SD) is considered to be a hopeless condition by the medical profession and by speech pathologists. The treatment of spasmodic dysphonia is to contain the symptoms, not to cure the problem.

The center of the disorder is the basal ganglia, according to current reports in the medical and speech pathology literature. I disagree markedly with this position, finding the cause is voice misuse and abuse, with psychological overtones. Over the past 20 years, I have been finding successes and cures with Direct Voice Rehabilitation (DVR).

Recovery from Spastic Dysphonia By Direct Voice Rehabilitation

Overview & Symptoms

The etiology of spastic dysphonia remains in dispute. Some writers propose a psychological causation; others favor a neurological or physiological disturbance. Dedo, Townsend, and Izdebski state:

A possible hypothesis for an organic cause would include physical trauma or a viral infection in the peripheral or the central nervous system as a cause of selective disturbances in conduction and control of neural impulses from or to the larynx. (1978, p. 879) 

The Strangled Voice

His voice came out "strangled." "I can barely talk," Bill says of his voice.

It began right after I yelled at a baseball game. I was hoarse and I noticed my voice just wasn't coming out right anymore. I had to push and force my voice out in order to talk. Then it got harder and harder to get the sound out and I pushed more until I was out of sound. My face and my neck tightened up and my body was very tense. Still the voice wasn't coming out right. It sounded like I was strangling myself when I talked.