BMC Center for Voice and Swallowing Newsletter

Center for Voice & Swallowing

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Newsletter March 2012, Vol. #1

Welcome to Boston Medical Center's Center for Voice & Swallowing

Everyday our voices speak volumes. Whether you are a teacher molding young minds, a professional singer entertaining an audience, a lawyer pleading a case or a mother reading a book to your child, your voice matters.

Our patients include professional and
non-professional singers, public speakers, teachers, clergy, attorneys, sales associates and actors.

At the Center for Voice and Swallowing at Boston Medical Center, we can help protect your voice health and provide immediate access to the area's most respected voice specialists.

The Center for Voice and Swallowing offers a wide array of evaluation and treatment options for patients with various voice and swallowing disorders including vocal cord paralysis, spasmodic dysphonia, acid reflux, vocal polyps and cysts, sulcus vocalis and vocal scarring, as well as singer's nodules and other disorders of the professional voice. The Center also offers diagnostic and treatment options for papillomas and early stage larynx cancer, and for swallowing and voice problems due to Parkinson's disease, stroke and other neurological disorders.

Our state-of-the-art voice center provides the full scope of services including diagnostic testing such as videolaryngostroboscopy, and a variety of in-office laryngeal therapies and procedures. Our physicians specialize in state-of-the-art, minimally-invasive surgery for vocal chords and early larynx cancers. Expert speech and language pathologists provide swallowing and voice therapy, including singing therapy, for comprehensive care.

Whether you are a singer or other professional who relies on your voice or you have an urgent swallowing disorder, our staff can see you quickly – in hours or days – so you can perform at your best.

Call 617.638.8124 to make an appointment or visit our website for more information.

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Free Voice Screening and Seminar on Wednesday, April 4
in Honor of World Voice Day

Free Voice Screenings!

Wednesday, April 4
4:00 – 7:00 pm

Boston Medical Center
Moakley Building, Ground Floor
Otolaryngology, Head & Neck Surgery Clinic
830 Harrison Avenue
Boston, MA 02118

The free voice screening takes place on April 4 in the state-of-the-art Moakley Building at Boston Medical Center.

Are you a former smoker? Do you have
hoarseness? Are you a concerned voice
professional? Check your vocal chords
now to avoid future problems.

Free Public Seminar!

Wednesday, April 4
"Understanding and
Maintaining a
Healthy Voice"
7:00 – 8:00 pm

Boston Medical Center
FGH Building, Ground Floor
Carter Conference Center
820 Harrison Avenue
Boston, MA 02118

Join Pieter Noordzij, MD of the Center for Voice and Swallowing at Boston Medical Center as he explains the way your voice functions and how to keep it healthy.

For more information about these events visit our website or call 617.638.7933.

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Small Changes Offer Big Results for Your Voice Health

Have you ever opened your mouth to speak, only to find that you could barely croak out the words? You are not alone. "People that use their voice frequently in their careers or pastimes such as teachers, lawyers and singers should be mindful of vocal health," according to Pieter Noordzij, MD, laryngologist at the Center for Voice and Swallowing at Boston Medical Center and associate professor of otolaryngology at Boston University School of Medicine.

Dr. Noordzij has special expertise in voice disorders and the care of the professional voice.

"Constantly trying to speak above the fray in a noisy classroom or hitting that high note night after night can strain the voice and lead to problems down the line. A few preventive measures, however, can go a long way in preserving vocal health for one's lifetime."

Dr. Noordzij offers some easy tips for maintaining your voice health:menu.

  • Drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water daily to keep your body well hydrated. Your vocal chords vibrate very fast and having a proper water balance helps keep them lubricated. Limit caffeine beverages to two per day, because these will actually dehydrate you.

  • Don't smoke, or if you do, quit. Smoking raises the risk of throat cancer and inhaling smoke irritates the vocal chords.

  • Avoid yelling or screaming habitually and try not to compete with background noise at bars, sporting events, parties, etc. If your throat feels dry or tired, or your voice is getting hoarse, stop talking. If your occupation requires you to speak above a loud ambient noise, consider using amplification such as a microphone.

  • Avoid frequent throat clearing. Doing it too much can injure your vocal chords and make you hoarse. Take a sip of water of swallow. If you feel like you have to clear your throat a lot, get checked by a doctor for reflux disease or allergy and sinus conditions.

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Rate Your Voice Health

Take this interactive quiz to determine how well your voice is performing in your everyday life. The quiz, hosted on the American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery website, is a good example of those used by clinicians to evaluate patients with voice difficulties. Rate your voice health now!

For a medical evaluation of your voice call 617.638.8124 to schedule an appointment.


You'll find updated tips about voice health from BMC's respected specialists, and the latest information about screenings and seminars.


Call: 617.638.8124
Fax: 617.414.4953

Boston Medical Center
Otolaryngology – Center for Voice & Swallowing
Moakley Building
Ground Floor
830 Harrison Avenue
Boston, MA 02118

Refer a Patient

Call: 617.638.8124
Fax: 617.414.4953

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