Speech restoration after circumferential pharyngolaryngectomy with free jejunal repair for advanced tumors of the hypopharyngo-esophageal tract remains a difficult problem to solve. We report here the results of secondary voice restoration in six patients who received a Provox 2 type prosthesis and intensive speech therapy after circumferential pharyngolaryngectomy with free jejunum repair. No patient had operative or post-operative complications due to insertion of the prosthesis. No patient had to have the prosthesis removed during the follow-up (8 to 14 months). Analysis of some acoustic parameters of voice (fundamental frequency, waveform perturbations) and qualitative characteristics of speech (intelligibility, pleasantness and acceptability) demonstrated that all the patients were able to produce satisfactory speech after tracheojejunum puncture and speech therapy and were satisfied with their own ability to communicate. Our results are reassuring and we therefore advise that in patients undergoing free jejunum flap reconstruction of the hypopharyngo-esophageal tract voice restoration should be attempted by placing a voice prosthesis through a secondary tracheo-esophageal puncture and providing intensive speech training.
- Circumferential pharyngolaryngectomy
- Jejunum free flap
- Prosthetic voice rehabilitation
- Voice and speech assessment
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