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To accurately diagnose vocal cord disorders, we utilize a technology called videostroboscopy, which is a state-of-the-art technique that provides a magnified, slow-motion view of the patient’s vocal cords in action. It allows us to accurately and efficiently diagnose many of the conditions and diseases of the vocal cords, including vocal cord polyps or vocal cord paralysis. If you suffer from hoarseness, a speech impediment, or any other disorder that affects your communication, there are many options to greatly improve your quality of life.
Please note that there is a $100 fee for canceling your videostroboscopy appointment.
Many patients who previously suffered from speech disorders have found great improvement using Radiesse® Voice, which is now used to treat vocal fold weaknesses associated with serious aspiration disorders. Muscle weakness or degeneration can lead to poor vocal fold closure and a weak, hoarse voice.
Radiesse Voice also helps patients suffering from Parkinson’s, too! Working closely with Huntington neurologists, these treatments have proven to benefit swallowing, aspiration (breathing) problems, speaking, and helps the patient as well as their caregiver.
In addition to all of our medical treatments or procedures for the voice and vocal cords, we provide the services of a certified speech therapist in our office to work one-on-one with our patients. Our speech therapist does a professional voice evaluation for one hour.
We help develop individualized plans of treatment for varying degrees of speech conditions, including sound production, improvement of voice quality, communication, and the professional voice. These sessions are generally 30 minutes a week, and are very effective for many conditions, including singing and speaking.
Hoarseness is a general term which describes abnormal voice changes. When hoarse, the voice may sound breathy, raspy, strained, or there may be changes in volume (loudness) or pitch (how high or low the voice is). The changes in sound are usually due to disorders related to the vocal folds, which are the sound-producing parts of the voice box.
There are many causes of hoarseness, but most are not serious and tend to go away in a short period of time. The most common causes are acute laryngitis, which usually occurs due to swelling from a common cold, upper respiratory tract infection, or irritation caused by excessive voice use such as screaming or yelling at a sporting event or concert.
While hoarseness due to a cold or flu may be short-lived and easy to manage, hoarseness that lasts longer than two weeks or has no obvious cause should be evaluated. It is very important to see a doctor if your hoarseness lasts longer than two weeks, or if you experience coughing up blood, difficulty swallowing, a lump in the neck, or a complete loss/change in voice lasting longer than a few days.
Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia) is common among all age groups, but especially the elderly. It may be caused by many factors, most of which are non-threatening and temporary. Rarely, difficulties in swallowing are signs of a more serious issue, such as a tumor or neurological disorder. If the difficulty in swallowing does not clear up by itself within a short period of time, you should see a doctor.
In our office, we do a fiberoptic laryngoscopy procedure in order to see inside your throat for any potential swallowing disorders. This gives an accurate diagnosis, which is crucial to developing a proper and effective treatment plan. The procedure is non-invasive, lasts only a few minutes, and there is no discomfort.
Symptoms of swallowing disorders may include:
Once the cause is determined, our patients may be treated with medication, swallowing therapy, or surgery. Most of these disorders can be treated with medication. Acid reflux is best treated by changing eating and living habits, such as eating a more bland diet, smaller and more frequent meals, elimination of alcohol or caffeine, reducing weight and stress, avoiding food within three hours of bedtime, or elevating your head while sleeping.
Otoplasty, or “ear pinning”, is a procedure to correct or reshape the physical structure of the ear. It is generally performed to set prominent ears closer to the head or to reduce the size of large ears. This procedure is generally done in an outpatient surgery center, and our patients usually report a mild pain in the hears for a short time after.
Dr. Kay is a certified otolaryngologist, or ear, nose, and throat specialist. Dr. Kay completed her surgical training at UCLA and is the chair of her department at Huntington Hospital. Dr. Kay aims to help any and every patient who is suffering from medical problems such as allergies, sleep apnea, vertigo, and more!
A life without allergy suffering is a phone call away.
Over 50 million Americans regularly suffer from allergies, and approximately 55% of all U.S. citizens test positive to one or more allergies. In our office, we can diagnose your allergies using a simple skin test, which will show if your immune system reacts to certain allergens. Generally, we test using the “top 20” panel of most common allergies, but we can test for hundreds of allergies. Using the results from an allergy test, Dr. Kay will choose the easiest and most effective treatment plan for her patients.
Generally, allergies can be treated with medicine that alleviates symptoms, or by immunotherapy (allergy shots) that desensitize the body to specific allergens. Both treatments are effective, but the best method of treating allergies is allergen avoidance. If that’s not an option, we recommend NeilMed Sinus Rinse, which you can find at any pharmacy or drug store.
Finding out what specifically what you are allergic to is the best first step in treating your symptoms. Using a HEPA air filter if you have pets, or eliminating the dust mites from your home are two ways to proactively manage and avoid your allergy suffering. Come see us and get your life without allergy suffering started today!
Mold reproduces through tiny, airborne spores. Indoor molds grow in damp areas.
Any wet surfaces in the home will attract mold and aid in reproduction. Areas to look out for include: basements, bathrooms, shower stalls, refrigerator drip trays, house plants, humidifiers and garbage pails.
The key to reducing mold is to keep your home dry:
Fix leaky faucets and pipes
Grass pollen levels tend to be the highest in late spring and summer. If your kids enjoy playing in the yard during these months, make sure you keep the grass cut short. Pollen from grass is easily brought indoors by wind, people and pets, so encourage your children to shower and change clothes when they come inside.
Trees pollinate in late winter and early spring. They produce light, dry pollen that can be carried by the wind for miles. Be wary of this when your children are eager to get outside in spring. They may be allergic to more than one type of tree pollen and it’s not always the trees in your yard.
Weeds are a nuisance in more ways than one. They grow like crazy and produce vast amounts of pollen every day. The main weed pollen season is during the late summer and fall. Try to keep your yard weed-free and be on high alert when your kids play in areas with unkempt gardens.
It’s important to talk about your child’s allergies with adults who spend time with them outside the home. This will ensure that caregivers and teachers are aware of any allergy problems and are able to help keep symptoms under control. It’s also a good idea to educate your child about allergies to help them cope.
Similar to allergy shots, sublingual allergy therapy is drops that are placed under the tongue that expose your body to the substance that you are allergic to. They gradually increase in strength to help your body build tolerance to the allergen. Patients usually use the drops 3 times a day for 3 to 5 years, though some patients may need more time.
Taken from the allergychoices website, here are the advantages of allergy drops:
Allergy drops are safe and effective, and a great alternative to allergy shots. Schedule an appointment today to consult with Dr. kay about sublingual allergy therapy.
Hearing loss affects everyone, whether it is someone you love or yourself. Testing for hearing loss is simple. If you think you might need a hearing test, here are the top ten signs to look out for.
The average person waits 5 to 7 years before they decide to do something about their hearing loss. With the proper medical care, those are years that could have been spent hearing the finer things in life.
Deafness is the inability to hear sound. It has many causes and can occur at any age. People can go deaf suddenly as a side effect of a virus, or lose their hearing over time because of disease, nerve damage, or an injury caused by noise or physical trauma. Sudden or profound deafness is easy to recognize, since there is such a noticeable change in hearing. Milder hearing loss may not be noticed right away, since it often comes on gradually and most people just get used to it.
One of the most common birth defects is hearing loss, or congenital deafness, which affects as many as 3 in every 1,000 babies born. Genetics are also believed to play a significant role in hearing loss in the elderly. Other factors may include medical problems, environmental exposure, trauma, and medications.
Deafness may be caused by one of two ways:
We will test your hearing loss to find out the root cause. Once we discover the exact reason you are suffering from a profound loss of hearing, there are many treatments that will be considered, depending on your individual case.
At our Pasadena office, we provide the services of a certified audiologist who can help diagnose hearing loss, as well as provide therapeutic services for rehabilitation and management of hearing loss. With extensive training, skills, and testing equipment to evaluate the hearing of adults, infants, and children of all ages, we provide a comprehensive solution for our patients.
Auditory brainstem reflex testing examines the complete auditory pathway from the inner ear to the brain. The test takes approximately one hour, where we measure the response to “clicking” sounds presented at various loudness levels. This data allows us to determine how efficiently sound is moving through the hearing system.
Tympanometry is also used to evaluate the function of the middle ear. The tympanogram provides us with a graphic representation of the relationship of air pressure in the ear canal to the impedance (or resistance to movement) of the ear drum and middle ear system. When the ear drum is disturbed by a sound, part of the sound is absorbed and sent through the middle ear, while the other part of the sound is reflected back. A typanogram provides us with additional information, especially the Eustachian tube function, to help diagnose and treat your hearing disorder.
Noise is one of the most common causes of hearing loss, and one of the most common occupational illnesses in the United States. A single shot from a large caliber firearm, experienced at close range, may permanently damage your hearing in an instant. Repeated exposure to loud machinery may, over an extended period of time, present serious risks to our hearing.
According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, up to 10 million Americans have already suffered irreversible hearing damage from noise, and 30 to 50 million more are exposed to dangerous noise levels (over 85 decibels) each day.
Noise-induced hearing loss is almost entirely preventable. While each individual’s susceptibility to hearing loss varies, it is always good to take the following precautions:
Occupations particularly at risk for hearing loss due to noise exposure include:
In addition to hearing loss, another condition that is often caused by noise exposure is tinnitus–or the perception of ringing, buzzing, or hissing sounds in the absence of any external stimulus. Those who suffer from tinnitus find it difficult to experience quiet, and this can be very distressing.
Originally used to fight wrinkles, botox can now be used to help relieve migraines! Botox can be injected into facial muscles to help relax them and fight migraines before they start. Thousands of people have now turned to botox to help with their chronic migraines! Botox is a quick solution that can last you for months. The best part is, it may be covered under your insurance if you have been diagnosed with chronic migraines! Call to see how we can help you with your migraine problems.
Information taken from the Botox website
Millions of people suffer from sleeping disorders. We successfully treat many of these conditions, including sleep apnea and snoring. Generally, treatment options are not too painful or uncomfortable, but may take some getting used to.
Sleep apnea is a disorder characterized by abnormal pauses in breathing or instances of abnormally low breathing during sleep. Each pause can last from about ten seconds to a few minutes and may occur 5 to 30 times or more per hour.
Snoring is the vibration of respiratory structures, due to obstructed air movement during breathing while sleeping. In some cases, the sound may be soft and not too disturbing. In other cases, however, snoring can be loud and unpleasant. Snoring during sleep may also be an early sign of sleep apnea.
We offer many proven treatments for problematic snoring and sleep apnea that can be done right here in our office. Please meet with Dr. Kay and find out which procedure(s) may be right for you.
If the in-office procedures don’t prove to be effective or for more severe cases of problematic snoring or sleep apnea, there are many surgical options available.
Vertigo is a common vestibular disorder that people of all ages can suffer from, but it is more common in older adults. Dr. Kay can diagnose patients with vertigo and treat them to help them overcome symptoms like imbalance or nausea.
Electronystagmography (ENG) testing is a procedure that tests disorders in the peripheral nervous system. It is a low-risk procedure that can tell you if your vertigo is coming from your brain or in your inner ear. After the test, Dr. Kay can move forward with prescribing the best way to treat your vertigo.
“The test may be performed if an individual is experiencing unexplained dizziness, vertigo, or hearing loss. Additional conditions in which ENG may be performed are acoustic neuroma, labyrinthitis, Usher syndrome, and Meniere’s disease. If a known lesion exists this test can identify the actual site.
*Some information adapted from John Hopkin’s University.
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