Blog Archives

Vocal Symptoms, Voice Activity, and Participation Profile and Professional Performance of Call Center Operators

The presence of vocal symptoms does not necessarily relate to decreased professional performance. However, an association between higher vocal activity limitation and participation scores and poorer professional performance was observed.

from the Journal of Voice

Pilot study on acute voice and throat symptoms related to exposure to organic dust: Preliminary findings from a provocation test

The aim of this pilot research was to investigate acute voice and throat symptoms related to organic dust exposure among nine subjects with suspected occupational rhinitis or asthma. Subjective voice and throat symptoms were recorded before and after an occupational exposure test. In addition, the study included perceptual assessment of subjects’ voice samples recorded before and after the exposure tests. The results showed a number of (statistically) significant voice and throat changes in symptoms based on subjects’ own assessments. These symptoms included a hoarse, husky, or tense voice, requiring an extra effort when speaking and difficulty in starting phonation (P<0.05). Other significant symptoms included feeling of shortness of breath or the need to gasp for air and feeling that the voice is weak or that it does not resonate (P<0.01). Such changes were not, however, detected by voice clinicians in the listening test of subjects’ voice samples recorded before and after the exposure. These results suggest that the larynx reacts to organic dust with symptoms that are felt by the patient rather than heard by the voice clinician. The voice disorder in such cases is a diagnosis based on symptoms expressed by subjects.

from Logopedics Phoniatrics Vocology

Seniors with Vocal Problems Want Treatment but Aren’t Getting It

from Duke

The breathy, hoarse voice of senior citizens is often thought to be a normal sign of aging. But doctors at the Duke Voice Care Center say that’s a false perception that needs to change. And they’ve discovered that it may partially explain why seniors who want treatment for the condition aren’t seeking it.

That’s a problem, added Seth Cohen, MD, a Duke otolaryngologist and the study’s lead author, because voice and swallowing concerns can lead to serious quality of life issues including anxiety, depression and social withdrawal.

Occupational voice complaints and objective acoustic measurements—do they correlate?

from Logopedics Phoniatrics Vocology

To enable the development of appropriate diagnostics and treatment for occupational voice disorders, this study addresses connections between subjective voice complaints and objective observations. The subjects of this study were 24 female customer advisors, who mainly use the telephone during their working hours. During one working day, at four different times, speech samples covering 20 minutes of telephone conversation by the customer service advisors (CSAs) were recorded. In addition, the CSAs filled in a questionnaire (visual analogue scale) concerning their voice problems. To represent the vocal symptoms three variables were used: vocal fatigue, hoarseness and a general sum-variable. A 5-minute sample was taken from recordings for further analyses. This included fundamental frequency, sound pressure level, alpha ratio (the ratio between the spectral energy below and above 1000 Hz) and number of vocal fold vibrations. In the objective acoustic measurements, it was found that fundamental frequency (F0) rose significantly during the working day. Also the self-reported voice symptoms increased significantly during the working day. However, correlations between vocal symptoms and acoustic measures were not found.