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Pain when speaking and throat tightness
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Pain when speaking and throat tightness

I posted on this in another thread but wanted to give it its own thread since I have weeded out so many of the options.

For the last few years I have experienced a lot of pain when speaking.  It doesn't feel like hoarseness, it is more like tightness.  When I try to speak it is like something is squeezing my voice box. I have tried going an entire week without talking and it didn't help at all.  The very next time I tried to speak I felt the same way.  A lot of time my throat will get tight and the glands around my neck seem to get swollen.

Voice rest in general hasn't done anything.

Since discovering this pain, I have:
1. Taken a nasal steroid for post-nasal drip
2. Had a PH monitor installed in me to test for acid reflux.  I do have GERD, but 2 months of prescription omeprazole hasn't helped my voice at all so I don't think it is the problem.
3. Gone through about 8 sessions of voice therapy with 2 different speech pathologists.
4. Had a small surgical procedure where they injected some material in one of my vocal cords because it didn't vibrate enough.

Recently I have started to go on a gluten-free diet.  If that doesn't help, maybe I will try another potential diet to weed out food allergies.

Based on all of the things that I have tried that have failed, does anyone know what else it could be?  I am only about a 3 days in to the gluten-free diet, so it is entirely possible that it will make a difference somewhere down the road.  I am also going to give up caffeine.
3 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_dr_f_tn
Hello and hope you are doing well.

Understand your predicament. Your symptoms could be due to an allergic reaction, in which case it should occur on consumption/on exposure to the allergen. Maintain a diary and note down and monitor your symptoms. This may help to narrow down the search.

The throat tightness can also happen due to iron deficiency anemia causing Plummer-Vinson syndrome, where there changes to the soft lining of the throat. This can be detected by a simple blood test. Please check with your doctor to rule out this condition.

Hope this helped and do keep us posted.
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Avatar_m_tn
Thank you for your response.  When I had the PH monitor installed they stuck a camera down my esophagus and said everything looked okay.  I have also had a several video stroboscopies done to check my voice.  If I had Plummer Vinson, wouldn't there be something physically noticeable? I also don't have any trouble swallowing.

So far the Gluten Free diet isn't doing much, but it has only been like 5 days.  It could be something in the air too, I guess.  I have considered going to an Allergist but from what I read a lot of food allergies don't show up on the tests because the allergic reaction takes more time to happen. Is that true?

I did start writing down the things that I have been eating. I tried to do that a long time ago but it seemed like I was writing down the same thing every day (because I pretty much ate the same things every day).  Since I started my Gluten-Free diet I have been eating a lot of different things, many of them containing corn.  Maybe I am allergic to corn?

Thanks again!
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Avatar_dr_f_tn
Hello and hope you are doing well.

The soft tissue changes may not be visible outside. As for allergies, up to 20% of the population perceive themselves as suffering from food allergy but only 1-2% of adults have genuine food allergies. The most common culprits are peanuts, milk, eggs, soya and shellfish. You will have to observe which food, on consumption is causing this problem.

It could be an allergic reaction, more so if the symptoms have occurred with the consumption of the same food. The diagnosis of allergy is difficult to prove or refute. Clinical suspicion and trial of elimination diets are used. An allergy specialist might be able to help you, you can discuss the possibilities with him.

Hope this helped and do keep us posted.
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