Could a Vocal Cord Hemorrhage Change Your Voice?

Posted in: Voice News  |  April 27, 2012 
Could a Vocal Cord Hemorrhage Change Your Voice?

Although simple health problems – like allergies or a common cold – can lead to a husky voice, there’s an acute vocal condition that can change it forever. Just ask Adele. Last fall, the singer was forced to cancel a number of sold-out shows when she suffered a vocal hemorrhage, a serious condition that can stop singers (and speakers) in their tracks.

What is a vocal cord hemorrhage? An injury where the tiny blood vessels that feed the vocal cords bleed, which can lead to swelling. The vocal cords can either develop blood blisters or bleed below the surface.

Beyond that, the blood in the area can eventually form scar tissue. That scarring can permanently affect how the vocal cords vibrate – and if there’s enough scar tissue, it can cause a person’s voice to become husky for the long run.

Rest is the only treatment for vocal cord hemorrhages. Although other vocal conditions come with a variety of treatment options, such as antibiotics and anti-inflammatory drugs, this is one issue where avoiding singing (and even talking) is critical. A medical professional can offer personalized advice for how long that rest should last, but a general rule is a week of quiet, followed by a check-up with a doctor.

Other issues unrelated to hemorrhaging can also cause bleeding in the vocal-cord region:

  • Vocal cord injections for laryngitis
  • Inflammation from acid reflux
  • Overuse of the voice

To be exactly certain about the cause of vocal issues, it’s important to visit a doctor. For advice or a consultation, feel free to give us a call anytime.