AskDefine | Define laryngitis

Dictionary Definition

laryngitis n : inflammation of the mucous membrane of the larynx; characterized by hoarseness or loss of voice and coughing

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Noun

laryngitis
  1. An inflammation of the larynx, typically resulting in hoarseness.

Translations

Extensive Definition

Laryngitis is an inflammation of the larynx. It causes hoarse voice or the complete loss of the voice because of irritation to the vocal folds (vocal cords).
Laryngitis is categorized as acute if it lasts less than a few days. Otherwise it is categorized as chronic, and may last over 3 weeks.

Causes

  • viral infection
  • bacterial or fungal infection
  • inflammation due to overuse of the vocal cords
  • excessive coughing
  • excessive alcohol consumption
  • excessive smoking

Symptoms

Symptoms of laryngitis vary, depending on the severity and also the cause. The most common, and obvious, symptom is impaired speech, ranging from a raspy hoarseness to the total loss of ability to speak, except at a whisper. Other symptoms can include:
  • Dry, sore throat
  • Coughing, which can be a symptom of, or a factor in causing laryngitis;
  • Difficulty swallowing;
  • Sensation of swelling in the area of the larynx;
  • Cold or flu-like symptoms (which, like a cough, may also be the causing factor for laryngitis;)
  • Swollen lymph glands in the throat, chest, or face;
  • Fever

What To Do

In most instances, the symptoms accompanying laryngitis are more directly linked to the causative factor, such as infection. In cases caused by overuse of the voice, symptoms other than vocal impairment may be absent. Laryngitis, hoarseness or breathiness that lasts for more than two weeks may signal a voice disorder and should be followed up with a voice pathologist. This is typically a vocology certified SLP (speech language pathologist) or a laryngologist (voice specialized ENT).
If laryngitis is due to gastroesophageal reflux:
  • The patient may be instructed to take a nonprescription medication such as Zantac or Prilosec for a period of 4-6 weeks.
If laryngitis is due to a bacterial or fungal infection:
  • The patient may be prescribed a course of antibiotics or anti-fungal medication.
If persistent hoarseness or loss of voice (sometimes called "laryngitis") is a result of vocal cord nodules:
  • Physicians may recommend a course of treatment that may include a surgical procedure and/or speech therapy.
  • Reduction of high-impact stress to the vocal cords caused by loud, frequent, and high pitched voicing is recommended.

References

laryngitis in German: Laryngitis
laryngitis in Persian: لارنژيت
laryngitis in French: Laryngite
laryngitis in Italian: Laringite
laryngitis in Lithuanian: Laringitas
laryngitis in Russian: Ларингит
laryngitis in Swedish: Laryngit

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Asiatic flu, Hong Kong flu, acute bronchitis, adenoiditis, adrenitis, aluminosis, amygdalitis, anthracosilicosis, anthracosis, appendicitis, arteritis, arthritis deformans, arthritis fungosa, arthritis pauperum, asbestosis, asthma, atrophic arthritis, atrophic inflammation, atypical pneumonia, bituminosis, black lung, blennorrhagic arthritis, brain fever, bronchial pneumonia, bronchiectasis, bronchiolitis, bronchitis, bronchopneumonia, bunion, bursitis, capillaritis, carditis, catarrh, catarrhal inflammation, cerebellitis, cerebral meningitis, cerebritis, cerebrospinal meningitis, chalicosis, chronic bronchitis, chronic infectious arthritis, chronic inflammation, cirrhotic inflammation, climactic arthritis, clitoritis, cold, colitis, collagen disease, collapsed lung, common cold, coniosis, conjunctivitis, coryza, croup, croupous pneumonia, cystitis, degenerative arthritis, diffuse inflammation, double pneumonia, dry pleurisy, emphysema, empyema, encephalitis, endocarditis, enteritis, epidemic pleurodynia, equine encephalomyelitis, exudative inflammation, fibrinous pneumonia, fibroid inflammation, flu, focal inflammation, gastritis, gingivitis, glossitis, gonococcal arthritis, gonorrheal arthritis, gonorrheal rheumatism, gout, gouty arthritis, grippe, hay fever, hemophilic arthritis, hepatitis, hyperplastic inflammation, hypertrophic arthritis, hypertrophic inflammation, infectional arthritis, infectious hepatitis, inflammation, influenza, irritable bowel syndrome, la grippe, lipoid pneumonia, lobar pneumonia, lumbago, lumbar rheumatism, lung cancer, lung fever, mastoiditis, meningitis, menopausal arthritis, metastatic inflammation, metritis, milk leg, mucous colitis, mumps meningitis, myelitis, necrotic inflammation, nephritis, neuritis, obliterative inflammation, ophthalitis, ophthalmia, orchitis, osseous rheumatism, osteitis, osteoarthritis, osteomyelitis, otitis, ovaritis, paradental pyorrhea, penitis, pericarditis, periodontitis, peritonitis, pharyngitis, phlebitis, pleurisy, pleuritis, pneumococcal pneumonia, pneumoconiosis, pneumonia, pneumonic fever, pneumothorax, podagra, proliferative arthritis, prostatitis, pyonephritis, pyorrhea, pyorrhea alveolaris, quinsy, reactive inflammation, rheum, rheumatism, rheumatiz, rheumatoid arthritis, rhinitis, sclerosing inflammation, seroplastic inflammation, serous inflammation, serum hepatitis, siderosis, silicosis, simple inflammation, sinusitis, sore throat, spastic colon, specific inflammation, subacute rheumatism, suppurative arthritis, suppurative inflammation, swine flu, syphilitic arthritis, tennis elbow, testitis, the sniffles, the snuffles, thrombophlebitis, tonsilitis, torticollis, toxic inflammation, traumatic inflammation, tuberculous arthritis, tuberculous rheumatism, ulcerative colitis, uratic arthritis, ureteritis, urethral arthritis, urethritis, uteritis, vaginitis, vertebral arthritis, virus pneumonia, visceral rheumatism, vulvitis, wet pleurisy, whooping cough, wryneck
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