What is laryngeal papillomatosis?
It is a disease of the larynx characterized by the presence of tumors on the surface of the vocal cords and other areas of the larynx. These tumors are usually benign but can cause serious complications such as difficulty breathing and changes in voice.
In this article, as an otolaryngologist in Panama, I will explain the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, treatments, and risk factors associated with laryngeal papillomatosis.
Causes of laryngeal papillomatosis:
The cause is a virus called the human papillomavirus (HPV). Transmission of HPV can occur during childbirth from an infected mother or through sexual contact.
It is also believed that HPV can be transmitted through contact with infected objects such as sex toys. However, it is important to note that not all individuals infected with HPV will develop laryngeal papillomatosis.
Symptoms of laryngeal papillomatosis:
They can vary depending on the size and location of the tumors. The most common symptoms include changes in voice, difficulty breathing, cough, and hoarseness.
Patients may also experience sore throat, fatigue, fever, and night sweats.
Diagnosis of laryngeal papillomatosis:
The diagnosis of this disease is based on clinical evaluation and the use of diagnostic tests.
The otolaryngologist will examine the throat and vocal cords using a laryngoscope, which is an instrument with a light and a camera.
Imaging tests such as computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging may also be used. In some cases, a biopsy of the tumors may be taken to confirm the diagnosis.
The treatment of laryngeal papillomatosis focuses on the removal of the tumors and the prevention of their growth. Treatment options include:
If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to speak with your otolaryngologist to receive an accurate diagnosis and treatment.
Risk factors include:
Risk factors for laryngeal papillomatosis include exposure to HPV, male gender, and age.
Children born to mothers infected with HPV have a higher risk of developing the disease. It has also been found that patients with weakened immune systems, such as HIV patients or those who have undergone organ transplantation, are at an increased risk.