Helicobacter pylori colonization in the larynges of patients with hoarseness

Tuan-Jen Fang, Li Ang Lee, Hsueh-Yu Li, Chun Yang, Chung Guei Huang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

18 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVES: Vocal nodules and polyps are two common noninfectious causes of hoarseness. Patients with persistent hoarseness often require microscopic laryngeal surgery to excise mass lesions of the larynx despite extensive voice resting and modification of voice use behavior. Helicobacter pylori has recently been reported to present in the upper aerodigestive tract. This study applies the rapid urease test to determine the colonization of Helicobacter pylori in surgical specimens of patients with vocal nodules and polyps. METHODS: In this prospective study, 53 consecutive patients with vocal nodules (n = 20) or vocal polyps (n = 33) were investigated from November 2004 to July 2005. Microscopic laryngeal surgery was performed in all cases. Tissue specimens harvested from the larynx were analyzed using the rapid urease test. RESULTS: The study population consisted of 33 females and 20 males with a mean age of 43.1 ± 9.9 years. Thirteen (24.5%) of the 53 patients revealed Helicobacter pylori colonization, and all were histopathologically diagnosed with vocal polyps. The difference in incidence of Helicobacter pylori colonization between vocal nodules and vocal polyps was statistically significant (0% [0/20] vs. 39.4% [13/33], P = .001). CONCLUSIONS: Helicobacter pylori often colonizes in the larynxes of patients with vocal polyps. These results indicate the involvement of Helicobacter pylori in vocal polyps. However, the presence of Helicobacter pylori as an etiologic factor in vocal polyps remains inconclusive.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)389-393
Number of pages5
Issue number3
StatePublished - 03 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Gastroesophageal reflux
  • Helicobacter pylori
  • Larynx
  • Vocal nodules
  • Vocal polyps


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