Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center

Research Report 2010-2011
 

Research Report 2007-2009


List of Laboratories

 

Research in Voice

Each year, the Vanderbilt Voice Center engages in significant research studies. There are 2 main areas of research being conducted in the Vanderbilt Voice Center:

* laryngeal wound healing
* laryngeal physiology

Detailed descriptions of specific research projects follow.


Effects of Vocalization on Tissue Protein Levels in the Acute Vocal Fold Wound

Overview:
We know that post-operative scarring is a negative complication of surgery. However, for years, experts in the voice care community have disagreed about the importance of voice rest for healing of a vocal cord wound. This study strives to understand how vocalization (using the vocal cords) influences wound healing. The results can help us change the clinical care standard for post-operative voice use.

Conducted by: Dr. Bernard Rousseau. Click here to go to Dr. Rousseau's laboratory site.
Funded by: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDSD) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH)


Growth Factor Treatment for Aged Vocal Folds

Overview:
For the aging population in the U.S., voice and swallowing disorders are common. They greatly impact communication and quality of life. These disorders can be debilitating. In this study we look at treatments for the age-related changes that occur within the larynx. This important organ protects the airway, provides ventilation, and facilitates vocalization.

Conducted by: Dr. Bernard Rousseau. Click here to go to Dr. Rousseau's laboratory website.
Funded by: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH)


Electrical Stimulation of a Denervated Muscle Promotes Selective Reinnervation by Native over Foreign Motoneurons

Overview:
Studies have shown that electrical stimulation can reanimate paralyzed laryngeal abductor muscles. This stimulation can prevent the muscles from atrophying while they regenerate. In addition, the stimulation can re-establish reinnervation. The findings of this study can greatly impact future pharmacological therapies for people whose laryngeal muscles have been damaged by injury or disease.

Conducted by: Dr. David Zealear
Funded by: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH)


The Brainstem Control of Laryngeal Muscles

Overview:
Your laryngeal muscles perform a variety of functions, including protecting your airway and producing sound. This study will look at the role that your brainstem plays in controlling your laryngeal muscles during speech production.

Conducted by: Dr. David Zealear


Reanimation of the Paralyzed Larynx With an Implantable Stimulation Device

Overview:
Bilateral vocal fold paralysis (BVFP) is a serious and often life-threatening medical condition. Conventional surgical therapiest relyl on voice laryngeal reseaction to enlarge the airway. Unfortunately, these surgeries often leave the patient with a weak, breathy voice. They also can put the patient at risk for aspiration. In certain studies, stimulation of the posterior cricoarytenoid (PCA) muscle shows great potential. This study will look at two different types of implantable electrodes for stimulation of the posterior cricoarytenoid (PCA) muscle.

Conductor: Dr. David Zealear

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