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Unilateral Left Vocal Fold Paralysis

Vocal fold paralysis (VFP) is unilateral in 27% to 78% of children with VFP. Unilateral VFP is most commonly a result of iatrogenic recurrent laryngeal nerve injury (13% to 81%), such as during patent ductus arteriosus ligation in cardiothoracic surgery, but may be idiopathic; primary neurologic causes are less common. Unilateral VFP is more commonly left-sided than right-sided.

This stroboscopic video demonstrates left vocal fold paralysis and anterior displacement of the arytenoid cartilage in a teenaged boy. Incomplete glottic closure is shown during sustained vowel phonation.

Click the Related Article link for a complete review of pediatric vocal fold paresis and paralysis.

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