Hoarseness
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with Physician-supervised AI

Reviewed By:

Eric A. Gantwerker, MD, MMSC

Eric A. Gantwerker, MD, MMSC (Ear, nose, throat (ENT))

Pediatric Otolaryngologist at Northwell Health and Associate Professor of Otolaryngology at Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell. He holds a Master of Medical Science (MMSc) in Medical Education with a special focus on educational technology, educational research, and game-based learning from Harvard Medical School and a Master of Science in Physiology and Biophysics from Georgetown University. He has a special interest in faculty development and has been a speaker or faculty at hundreds of local, national, and international courses and conferences. He is also an active blogger and podcaster for several organizations, including the Harvard Macy Institute (HMI), Harvard Medical School CME Online, and BackTable Innovations. He has been featured in the news and print for media outlets such as USA Today, Businesswire, The Washington Post, Nature Medicine, Fox News, and KevinMD. He was also the Vice President, Medical Director of a medical video game company, Level Ex from 2018 to 2023 that utilized game technology and psychology to create interactive experiences for healthcare professionals. | He is recognized as an expert on the implementation of educational technologies and gaming with a foundation in educational theory for health professions education. He was honored to be inducted as an Associate Member of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Academy of Master Surgeon Educators and as an Associate Fellow of the Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE).

Rohini R, MD

Rohini R, MD (Ear, nose, throat (ENT))

Dr. Rohini R is an ENT, Head and Neck Surgeon, with a Fellowship in Advanced Endoscopic Sinus and Skull Base Surgery and a Fellowship in Aesthetic Medicine and Lasers. Besides clinical practice and working with Ubie, she is actively training and mentoring medical students and residents. She has functioned in various work settings - teaching hospitals, private and free health centers, and worked with patients from all socioeconomic backgrounds due to her experience in free hospitals and volunteering in India and Singapore.

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People with similar symptoms also use Ubie's symptom checker to find possible causes

  • Abnormal voice changes

  • No improvement in hoarse voice even after a few weeks

  • My voice sounds coarse in the evening/at night

  • My voice sounds hoarse in the evening/at night

  • My voice sounds coarse when I wake up

  • My voice sounds weird

  • Talking till my voice is hoarse at work

Learn More

Content updated on Nov 29, 2023

About the symptom

It refers to having an abnormal voice making it sound raspy, strained, or breathy. It may due to any number of things including viral illnesses, injury, surgery, reflux, post-nasal drip, vocal abuse, or even masses or lesions on the vocal folds. Voice changes lasting longer than a couple of weeks or with bleeding (hemoptysis) should consider seeking medical attention.

When to see a doctor

Seek professional care if you experience any of the following symptoms

  • Abnormal menstruation

  • Edema

  • Respiratory wheeze

  • Difficulty breathing / breathlessness

  • Facial edema

  • Fever

  • Chest pain during swallowing

  • Dysphagia

  • Small voice

Possible causes

  • Thyroid tumor

    A tumor in the thyroid gland. Most are non-cancerous, but some may be malignant. The primary symptom is a lump in the front of the neck along the thyroid gland. Workup includes ultrasound, biopsy, blood tests, and sometimes other scans.

  • Vocal cord paralysis

    A condition in which the nerves that supply the vocal cords are damaged, causing poor movement (paresis) or complete absence of movement (paralysis). If presenting in infancy, it can be either due to conditions affecting the brain or brainstem where the nerves exit the skull or due to surgery on the heart or lesions in the chest. Surgery on the neck, especially the thyroid gland, can also damage the nerves. Viral infections and intubation can also cause injury to the vocal folds or nerves.

  • Medullary thyroid cancer

    Medullary thyroid cancer is an unusual type of cancer of the thyroid, which is an organ in the front of the neck. The cause of medullary carcinoma is unknown but is sometimes due to inherited gene mutations. Workup includes scans, ultrasound, biopsy and a specific lab test called calcitonin.

  • Vocal cord polyp
  • Pharyngeal tumor
  • Sinusitis
  • Common cold (upper respiratory tract infection)
  • Esophageal cancer

Related serious diseases

  • Anaphylaxis

    A severe allergic reaction that affects the entire body. It can be life-threatening due to low blood pressure and airway swelling (preventing breathing). Anaphylaxis can be triggered by various things, including foods, insect stings, and medications.

  • Acute epiglottitis

Questions your doctor may ask about this symptom

Your doctor may ask these questions to check for this symptom

  • Is your voice hoarse?

  • Have you experienced a hoarse voice for over three weeks?

  • Does your hoarse voice worsen in the morning?

  • Does your hoarse voice get worse at night?

  • Is your throat sore?

Other Related Symptoms

Symptoms from similar body parts

Symptoms treated by the same specialty

References

  • Judd O, Colvin IB. Hoarse voice. BMJ. 2010 Apr 7;340:c522. doi: 10.1136/bmj.c522. PMID: 20375088.

    https://www.bmj.com/content/340/bmj.c522

  • Voice Changes - Mayo Clinic

    https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/voice-disorders/symptoms-causes/syc-20353022

Reviewed By:

Eric A. Gantwerker, MD, MMSC

Eric A. Gantwerker, MD, MMSC (Ear, nose, throat (ENT))

Pediatric Otolaryngologist at Northwell Health and Associate Professor of Otolaryngology at Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell. He holds a Master of Medical Science (MMSc) in Medical Education with a special focus on educational technology, educational research, and game-based learning from Harvard Medical School and a Master of Science in Physiology and Biophysics from Georgetown University. He has a special interest in faculty development and has been a speaker or faculty at hundreds of local, national, and international courses and conferences. He is also an active blogger and podcaster for several organizations, including the Harvard Macy Institute (HMI), Harvard Medical School CME Online, and BackTable Innovations. He has been featured in the news and print for media outlets such as USA Today, Businesswire, The Washington Post, Nature Medicine, Fox News, and KevinMD. He was also the Vice President, Medical Director of a medical video game company, Level Ex from 2018 to 2023 that utilized game technology and psychology to create interactive experiences for healthcare professionals. | He is recognized as an expert on the implementation of educational technologies and gaming with a foundation in educational theory for health professions education. He was honored to be inducted as an Associate Member of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Academy of Master Surgeon Educators and as an Associate Fellow of the Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE).

Rohini R, MD

Rohini R, MD (Ear, nose, throat (ENT))

Dr. Rohini R is an ENT, Head and Neck Surgeon, with a Fellowship in Advanced Endoscopic Sinus and Skull Base Surgery and a Fellowship in Aesthetic Medicine and Lasers. Besides clinical practice and working with Ubie, she is actively training and mentoring medical students and residents. She has functioned in various work settings - teaching hospitals, private and free health centers, and worked with patients from all socioeconomic backgrounds due to her experience in free hospitals and volunteering in India and Singapore.

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