What Is a Stroke?

A stroke is any brain injury that is caused by a blood clot or by abnormal bleeding in the brain. The part of the brain that lacks blood flow or that bleeds is damaged and may not send signals correctly to certain parts of the body. When a certain part of the brain that controls vocal cord or throat movement is damaged, the patient may experience a change in voice or trouble with swallowing.

This voice change often is because of a paralyzed or partially paralyzed vocal cord. Often this will improve with time and with speech therapy but occasionally a paralyzed vocal cord may not recover and may require surgery to correct. If the vocal cord is paralyzed, there may be choking with drinking liquids or when eating. A special examination at the Texas Center for Voice & Swallowing center can determine what area is damaged and if surgery or therapy would be helpful to improve function.

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