How It Feels
You may feel like gagging
when the mirror is placed in your throat. It may be uncomfortable when the
doctor pulls on your tongue. If this becomes painful, signal your doctor by
pointing to your tongue, since you will not be able to speak. If a spray
anesthetic is used, it tastes bitter, it can make you feel like your throat is
swollen, and it may make you feel that it is hard to swallow.
Direct flexible laryngoscopy
It may feel strange
to have the doctor put the scope up your nose. But it should not hurt and you
will still be able to breathe. If a spray anesthetic is used, it may taste
bitter. The anesthetic can also make you feel like your throat is swollen. You can swallow normally but you may not feel it.
Direct rigid laryngoscopy
You will be asleep and
feel nothing during the laryngoscopy. After the procedure, you may have some
nausea, general muscle aches, and may feel tired for 1 to 2 days. You also may
have a sore throat and sound hoarse. Suck on throat lozenges or gargle with
warm salt water to help your sore throat.
If your child is having this procedure, the same is also true. If your child has a sore throat and is age 4 or older, you can give him or her throat lozenges. Also, a child age 8 or older can gargle with warm salt water.
If a biopsy was taken,
it is normal to spit up a small amount of blood after the laryngoscopy. Talk to
your doctor about how much bleeding to expect and how long the bleeding may
last. Call your doctor immediately if:
- You have a lot of bleeding or if the bleeding
lasts for 24 hours.
- You have any trouble breathing.
All types of laryngoscopy have a small chance of
causing swelling and blocking the airway. If you have a partially blocked
airway because of tumors, polyps, or severe inflammation of the tissues at the
back of the throat (epiglottitis), you may have a higher
chance of problems.
If complete blockage of the airway occurs,
which is rare, your doctor may need to put a tube in your throat to help you
breathe. Or, very rarely, your doctor may have to make a cut (incision) in your
neck (a tracheotomy).
If a biopsy was taken, there is a very small
chance of bleeding, infection, or a tear in the airway.
Laryngoscopy is an examination that lets
your doctor look at the back of your throat, your
voice box (larynx), and vocal cords with a scope (laryngoscope). If a biopsy was
done, it may take several days for your doctor to know the results.
The throat (larynx) does not have swelling,
an injury, narrowing (strictures), or foreign bodies. Your vocal cords do not
have scar tissue, growths (tumors), or signs of not moving correctly
Your larynx has inflammation, injury,
strictures, tumors, or foreign bodies. Your vocal cords have scar tissue or
signs of paralysis.