Oesophageal voice

How we can help people with oesophageal voice

Oesophageal voice is used after a laryngectomy (surgery to remove the larynx). It involves swallowing and expulsion of air and produces vibrations in the hypopharynx (part of the throat behind the pharynx). This enables patients of such surgery to access a form of speech and therefore communicate with people using this method of speech.

What is oesophageal voice?

Oesophageal voice is a method of speech used after an operation to remove the larynx has taken place. It offers an alternative to normal speech as it enables the patient to swallow and expel air through a technique which produces vibrations in the hypopharynx cavity.

What causes oesophageal voice?

Oesophageal voice is a technique used for speech and is only used after the removal of the larynx (laryngectomy). It may not be an appropriate method for all people who have undergone this type of surgery.

What problems caused by oesophageal voice can SLT UK help with?

Speech and language therapy can help with the problems associated with removal of the larynx. Speech and language therapy will help to develop the technique of oesophageal voice. Through the use of this technique, may also help with related voice, speech sound and communication problems.

How does speech and language therapy help oesophageal voice?

Speech and language therapy will help with problems and allow a client to train in the technique of using oesophageal voice. This will enable the patient to have another approach to communication and can improve a client’s communication skills. This may result in a client becoming more confident and therefore more fluent in their production of speech, even if this is different to conventional speech.

There are many benefits to having speech and language therapy after surgery of the larynx. Speech and language therapy can help improve any aspect of an individual's communication dependent on their needs. It can also help increase confidence and self-esteem whilst reducing anxiety when communicating with others.

What would speech and language therapy treatment for oesophageal voice involve?

Speech and language therapy for oesophageal voice may involve assessment, reports, reviews, therapy programmes, support groups, training, advice and education.

Oesophageal voice can be a difficult technique to use, speech and language therapists will help to train and support an individual in using this technique.


Oesophageal voice is a technique used to produce speech sounds after the removal of the larynx. This operation is known as a laryngectomy. Speech and language therapy can be used to train a patient in the technique of using the oesophageal voice.

If you feel you may benefit from speech and language therapy or would like any more information on our services please email office@slt.co.uk or call 0330 088 5643.

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