Friday, January 05, 2007

I know you are just dying to hear how my appt went today. So, without further delay, here is a copy of the email I sent to NM in response to her question: "did you see the doctor?"

"yes i did.

i thought he was quite good. possibly because after i told him we'd gone to school together he knew that it was likely i had a brain and he listened to what i had to say, and wanted questions. (i was complimented on my ability to give background info. too bad my parents aren't around to hear that the bucks they shelled out for college and grad school was money well spent.)

I told him right off that i thought my voice hadn't come back, and he said he thought it sounded good...but that i would know. I had thought about bringing in samples, but decided against it.

he then took a look....and....I am not crazy, there are nodules on my vocal chords, and of the one on my right (i think that's the one he commented on) vocal cord was described as being small, but very "angry." Adding "I wish you could see this, it's inflamed, and filled with blood, and a textbook picture."
He wants me to come back in april, and get it looked again, as he thinks it's all related to whatever i had in november.

and then he said that he was surprised at how i good i sounded, considering what it looked like.
He also offered a speech therapist referral, thinking they might be able to give me some advice.
told me not to yell, not to try to talk over noise (like at concerts), consider a bedroom humidifier, drink lots of water, not much caffeine (no problem), moderate alcohol, and not to talk excessively.

so, good news, bad news. bad news-nodule. good news, i sound pretty good, considering, and he's hopeful it will be diminished the next time i come in."

Let me add one thing. We started with a case history. And I began by saying something like "I don't yell, I don't sing, I try to modulate my voice."

I look over, and he has typed "patient denies singing."
And I couldn't help but laugh and say:"I do not sing. If anyone says they have heard me sing, they're lying."


Blogger Mony said...

It was your musical voice!
Wow, that has to be irritating and painful.

10:52 AM  
Blogger jk said...

not painful at all. But concerning.

1:36 PM  
Anonymous lee said...

Is this just one of those "wait and see" conditions? Can there be aftereffects?

Sounds worrysome....

3:20 PM  
Blogger jk said...

aftereffects? yes, my voice could be shot. but that's the worst case.(though that's a long way from wehre i am now. today, most wouldn't know there is a thing wrong with my voice.)

Wait and see is the first line of treatment.(in my case, the nodules had been around for a few years before they were ever noticed the first time in 2001---and only then because they were looking at something else, not because i was having problems.

At the opposite end of the treatment spectrum is surgery. Which usually works. But not for julie andrews.

there's lots of waiting. then, in some cases, "vocal rest." that's why your favorite pop singer has to cancel a tour every once in a while. (that or bad ticket sales)

10:37 PM  
Blogger Mony said...

We have some great voice doctors here. Let's get you an appt. in late February.

10:38 PM  
Anonymous lee said...

Ouch, ouch and ouch. Just spent some time googling "vocal cord nodules," being a newbie on this subject. I hope everything resolves itself, without treatment.

That said, I'm with mony - I think you should see a voice specialist. A second opinion can't hurt, and it'd be someone who really understands patients who speak and sing for a living.

(I remember reading about poor Julie Andrews, but just the aftermath, not the reason for her surgery.)

9:02 AM  
Blogger jk said...

thanks for the kind words, but i'm not dealing with some rare problem....nodes are pretty common among all kinds of people who use their voice: teachers, preachers, etc.

No reason to doctor hop at this moment. All advice at this stage will be the same.

And yes, the doctors at vandy are quite good....just ask NM.

(and don't forget, a speech therapist is on the way...)

11:05 AM  

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