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Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol. 2012 Apr;269(4):1195-203. doi: 10.1007/s00405-011-1890-6. Epub 2011 Dec 31.

Tridimensional assessment of adductor spasmodic dysphonia pre- and post-treatment with Botulinum toxin.

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University Medical Centre, ORL Phoniatrics, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands.


Spasmodic dysphonia voices form, in the same way as substitution voices, a particular category of dysphonia that seems not suited for a standardized basic multidimensional assessment protocol, like the one proposed by the European Laryngological Society. Thirty-three exhaustive analyses were performed on voices of 19 patients diagnosed with adductor spasmodic dysphonia (SD), before and after treatment with Botulinum toxin. The speech material consisted of 40 short sentences phonetically selected for constant voicing. Seven perceptual parameters (traditional and dedicated) were blindly rated by a panel of experienced clinicians. Nine acoustic measures (mainly based on voicing evidence and periodicity) were achieved by a special analysis program suited for strongly irregular signals and validated with synthesized deviant voices. Patients also filled in a VHI-questionnaire. Significant improvement is shown by all three approaches. The traditional GRB perceptual parameters appear to be adequate for these patients. Conversely, the special acoustic analysis program is successful in objectivating the improved regularity of vocal fold vibration: the basic jitter remains the most valuable parameter, when reliably quantified. The VHI is well suited for the voice-related quality of life. Nevertheless, when considering pre-therapy and post-therapy changes, the current study illustrates a complete lack of correlation between the perceptual, acoustic, and self-assessment dimensions. Assessment of SD-voices needs to be tridimensional.

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