How Tessie got her voice back from Unilateral Cord Paralysis by Direct Voice Rehabilitation

Dear Dr. Cooper:

I would like to express my sincere appreciation and to acknowledge the successful rehabilitation of my voice after two weeks of intensive therapy under your Direct Voice Rehabilitation method from July 8 to 20, 2002.

For the record, I was initially diagnosed with "beginning Spasmodic Dysphonia" by second ENT specialist, after failing to get a diagnosis from the first ENT I consulted due to hoarse voice. The third ENT specialist who took over the second when he went on vacation diagnosed the source of the hoarseness to be due to reflux.

After six months of treatment for reflux while simultaneously medicating for gastric ulcers and gastritis under the care of my gastroenterologist, the third ENT specialist diagnosed that the condition graduated to unilateral vocal cord paralysis (left). I went for a second opinion of a fourth ENT who confirmed the findings of vocal cord paralysis.

Both the third and fourth ENT specialists advised me to undergo voice therapy. In addition, the third ENT advised me to undergo an MRI of the brain and the throat. The objective was to establish the cause of the paralysis. According to the neurologist, the MRI results showed normal condition of the brain and the throat. I consulted the fifth ENT for a final evaluation before leaving for my voice rehabilitation.

On June 1, the fifth ENT, after doing a flexible laryngeal examination, diagnosed my condition as a unilateral vocal cord paresis (left). The ENT prescribed an EMG of both vocal cords. On June 4, the fifth ENT and the third neurologists performed jointly the EMG. The EMG report indicated that the source of the paralysis is from the central nervous system. The fifth ENT also prescribed a voice therapy and follow up examination after three months.

The Direct Voice Rehabilitation program that I started on July 8, 2002 allowed me to discover my "new voice" at two notes higher than my habitual speaking pitch. On the ninth day of my program, I could already be heard and understood. By the time I finished my program on July 20, 2002, I was speaking normally at about 80% of the normal volume.

On July 21, I joined the Filipino community gathering in Las Vegas. I was invited to give a 15-minute talk without the use of a microphone. I was able to communicate normally throughout the day without anybody noticing that I had a voice problem. As a final confirmation of my voice rehabilitation, I can now speak to my sister from the ground floor of her house and get myself heard and understood while she stays in her room in the second floor. Before my rehabilitation, I have to approach to be heard and understood.

Finally, I would like to express appreciation to the patients and the former patients I met during the program. Their words of encouragement and expression of confidence in the program boosted my own resolve to carry on. Please extend my personal greetings and gratitude to them too.