Laryngeal Electromyography: Clinical Application

Robert T. Sataloff, Phurich Praneetvatakul, Reinhardt J. Heuer, Mary J. Hawkshaw, Yolanda D. Heman-Ackah, Sarah Marx Schneider, Steven Mandel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


Laryngeal electromyography (LEMG) is a valuable adjunct in clinical management of patients with voice disorders. LEMG is valuable in differentiating vocal fold paresis/paralysis from cricoarytenoid joint fixation. Our data indicate that visual assessment alone is inadequate to diagnose neuromuscular dysfunction in the larynx and that diagnoses based on vocal dynamics assessment and strobovideolaryngoscopy are wrong in nearly one-third of cases, based on LEMG results. LEMG has also proven valuable in diagnosing neuromuscular dysfunction in some dysphonic patients with no obvious vocal fold movement abnormalities observed during strobovideolaryngoscopy. Review of 751 patients suggests that there is a correlation between the severity of paresis and treatment required to achieve satisfactory outcomes; that is, LEMG allows us to predict whether patients will probably require therapy alone or therapy combined with surgery. Additional evidence-based research should be encouraged to evaluate efficacy further.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)228-234
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Voice
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Electromyography
  • Laryngeal electromyography
  • Vocal fold fixation
  • Vocal fold paralysis
  • Vocal fold paresis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • LPN and LVN
  • Speech and Hearing


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