Battle won

About 9 weeks post op and still recovering, feeling stronger each day. I am 100% pain free. However, my "Minnie Mouse voice" is due to the right vocal cord being paralyzed from the procedure. My voice is not as squeaky, but still barely audible. I consider it a blessing, as it has kept me home; and I am so enjoying my soon to be 17 and 19 year olds! I have not returned to work, but suspect I will soon. I am in speech therapy twice each week for the past three weeks. I have an hour of "homework" each day to strengthen the vocal cord and improve the quality of my voice, diaphragmatic breathing and Myofunctional therapy. Breathing and talking are exhaustive. Swallowing is still a labor. I am often in a coughing fit and now have acid reflux.

Last week I received a copy of the OR report. Apparently, the 9th and 10th nerve were compressed by the vessel. This made more sense of my current condition as from what I have read the 10th nerve is related to "to the function of numerous structures in the body. The vagus nerve supplies nerve fibers to the pharynx (throat), larynx (voice box), trachea (windpipe), lungs, heart, esophagus and most of the intestinal tract (as far as the transverse portion of the colon). And the vagus nerve brings sensory information back from the ear, tongue, pharynx and larynx." To read more on this Vagus nerve click:

I follow up with my neurosurgeon on Wednesday and the ENT next week.

So the battle has been won, but the fight is not yet over.

Congratulations on being pain free!!! Keep fighting till you reach a full recovery. You've come this far, so the rest should be a piece of cake.

That's great news. I see you completely recovered. Hang in there. Your story has given me more confidence to go through with the surgery when circumstances allow.

I am so happy you are pain free!!!!! Hang in there, as you are giving so many people hope, even though your are still having some struggles. So strange but I have not had a pain since my laryngeal throat cancer surgery. They say it isn't connected BUT?????

I went in for a nerve block, brain surgery, or what ever they wanted to do. That is when they discovered the cancer.

Anything to be out of pain. I don't believe anyone can understand the pain we go throught without first hand experience.

I am optimistic your persistence will pay off. Best Wishes

Fabulous! I think I could go without speaking at all to get permanent and complete relief.

It's so wonderful to hear a successful op story, congratulations! You've gotten through the hard part and I know I'd take a paralysed vocal chord over gpn pain any day! My thoughts are with you for a speedy recovery.



Wow, complications. How are you today?
This was posted a while ago.
I am contemplating MVD and don’t know if I should.


Surgery marks the beginning of a healing phase, and it is a mountain which takes a lot of time to climb. Best wishes on your journey!

Hi Donna,

First of all, wishing you a speedy recovery.

I had a suboccopital craniotomy 6 years ago. The 9th & 10th nerves had a major compression. The surgery paralyzed my Left vocal cord. Have had VC augmentation which enables me to talk. I still have substantial pain which increases when I talk and my voice is very raspy and hard to hear in a noisy environment.

Lets hope your paralyzed VC function returns. The chances are good it will. I was just in the other percentage where it did not return to function.

Try eating 1/2 apple in the evening this will help you reflex. Also take small bits of food or you may choke easily.

You are the first person I have ever communicated with on line about my health issue. Hope to chat with you further.

Take care


18 weeks post op. Following up. It has been a while. I am doing very well. Still pain free, 100%. The neurosurgeon released me to the care of my ENT. My right vocal fold is regaining strength. I am about 75% back to my true voice, some mornings even better. I am most challenged when I am in a group, large atmosphere, and/or competing with background sound. This is when my voice is greatly exhausted. I still attend speech therapy twice each week. It is very effective. The exercises are silly and time consuming, but worth it. All in all I am thrilled that I had the MVD. As I said, the GPN pain is completely gone. At this point, I can eat just about everything, and am only limited due to the fear of coughing fits. I don't have my usual laugh, yet. The laugh I have is awkward and cautious to prevent coughing. So coughing/breathing are my last hurdle. In time, I will overcome these with vocal fold exercise, diaphragmatic breathing, and discipline. I am still not back to work, as my livelihood relies completely on my ability to speak in large groups. (I recommend looking into disability insurance before surgery.) I walk and do yoga. I can't do any exercises that might strain my vocal cords. Yoga is great for me as it helps me to focus on opening up air passage ways, breathing, and relaxing muscles. Walking is great for the healing brain. I get my strength from God of whom I believe will use all of this for good. I am thankful for this peaceful time of healing and all of you who impact this support group in ways you can't even imagine.

Hello Donna. I’m so glad to hear about your success. Would you mind telling me who did your surgery?

Thank you Edna. Dr. Robert Goodman. He is head of Neurosurgery at St. Luke's Hospital in NYC. I highly recommend him, even if just for a consultation. He was not quick to cut, but confident he could make the pain go away. Two and a half years ago he was the first to prescribe a script that actually worked, Trileptal. I was symptomatic at times, but did not have episodes for that period of time. No electrifying or piercing pain. Once the meds lost effectiveness, surgery was eminent. He and his hand picked staff are compassionate and exceptional. I am blessed to live close to this city. If I can be of further assistance, please allow me to. :)
Best wishes for answers, relief, and full recovery. Stay strong.