Dr. M.J. Bazos, Patient Handout
About Your Diagnosis
Laryngitis is a minor inflammation of the vocal cords and surrounding area that results in hoarseness. It can be caused by a viral or bacterial infection, excessive use of the voice, and allergies. Recovery usually takes 7–10 days.

Living With Your Diagnosis
Signs and symptoms include a sore throat with hoarseness or loss of voice, slight fever, difficulty swallowing, and a dry cough.

For minor discomfort a nonaspirin preparation can be used. Cough syrups and lozenges can help relieve discomfort. Resting the voice by whispering or writing notes is usually all that is needed. If the cause is a bacterial infection, antibiotics will be prescribed and should be taken until finished. No special diet is needed, although liquids may be better tolerated. No activity restrictions are necessary.

The DOs
• Rest your voice. Write notes or whisper for a few days.
• If antibiotics are needed, finish all of them.
• Use a cool-mist humidifier to soothe the airway. Remember to change the water and clean it daily.
• Increase fluid intake.

The DON’Ts
• Don’t use your voice unless absolutely necessary.
• Don’t skip doses or stop taking any prescribed antibiotic.

When to Call Your Doctor
• If a high fever or breathing difficulty occurs.
• If symptoms last longer than 2 weeks.