Charleston, South Carolina 29403

  • Presbylarynx


Presbyphonia is an age-related voice disorder that affects more than 10 million people in the United States. Presbyphonia is characterized by vocal fold atrophy that impairs older individuals' ability to communicate, leading to social isolation and reduced quality of life. Outcomes from current treatment approaches are often suboptimal for patients with presbyphonia as they do not sufficiently challenge the respiratory system to induce meaningful change. It is highly likely that the addition of respiratory training would result in greatly improved outcomes, such as the ability to speak loud and long enough to have a normal conversation. The purpose of this study will be to examine the effect of adding inspiratory muscle strength training (IMST) or expiratory muscle strength training (EMST) to standard of care voice therapy on respiratory and voice outcomes in patients with an age-related voice disorder. Forty-eight participants diagnosed with presbyphonia will be blocked-randomized into three intervention groups, using a 3-parallel arm design: IMST and voice exercises, EMST and voice exercises, and voice exercises during all session. Study endpoints will be the change in voice and respiratory measures after four treatment sessions compared to baseline values. Response to treatment will be analyzed to determine if there are subgroups of high- or low-responders based on baseline voice and respiratory characteristics.


Inclusion Criteria: - must receive a diagnosis of presbyphonia by a trained laryngologist. The diagnosis will be given following a visual examination if the observations are consistent with the characteristics of a presbylarynx, as judged by the laryngologist. - must be 50 years old and older. Exclusion Criteria: - has received voice therapy in the past year - presents with a vocal fold pathology other than presbyphonia - has a known neurologic or a progressive neuromuscular disease - has a medical condition that could be aggravated by the experimental intervention, or any condition judged by the physician (Dr. Halstead) as being unsuitable for RMST. - has dysarthria or a language disorder - has a hearing loss that is not adequately managed - has a cognitive disorder that might affect treatment compliance - is unable to give informed consent



Primary Contact:

Principal Investigator
Heather Bonilha, PhD
Medical University of South Carolina

Backup Contact:


Location Contact:

Charleston, South Carolina 29403
United States

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Site Status: N/A

Data Source:

Date Processed: June 16, 2021

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