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Laryngoscope. 2001 Oct;111(10):1735-41.

Symptoms, laryngeal findings, and 24-hour pH monitoring in patients with suspected gastroesophago-pharyngeal reflux.

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  • 1Department of Logopedics and Phoniatrics, Karolinska Institute, Huddinge University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden.



To investigate the laryngeal signs and symptoms associated with gastroesophago-pharyngeal reflux (GEPR).


A prospective controlled study.


Nineteen healthy control subjects and 43 patients, 26 with posterior laryngitis (PL) and 17 with a normal larynx and suspected GEPR, were examined using videolaryngoscopy and 24-hour ambulatory dual-probe pH monitoring.


Pharyngeal acid reflux occurred in 18 (69%) patients with PL, in 9 (53%) patients with a normal larynx, and in 5 (26%) healthy control subjects. Multiple-comparison procedure showed that pharyngeal reflux was significantly more prevalent in patients with PL than in the healthy control subjects (P < .05). The laryngoscopic findings in patients with pharyngeal reflux varied from normal mucosa to thickening or edema of the posterior wall of the glottis, which was the most frequent finding in the PL group. Erythema was uncommon; it was found only in patients with verified pharyngeal reflux. There was no difference in symptom profile between the patients with PL and patients with a normal larynx or patients with or without pharyngeal reflux.


Pharyngeal reflux is significantly more prevalent in patients with posterior laryngitis than in healthy control subjects. Moreover, a certain degree of pharyngeal reflux appears to be a normal phenomenon. The most common laryngeal finding in patients with posterior laryngitis is thickening or edema of the posterior wall of the glottis. GEPR does not yield specific laryngeal symptoms. Thus, it is unreliable to base the reflux diagnosis on symptoms alone.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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