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Correlation between the Voice Handicap and Swallowing Quality of Life in patients with laryngeal cancer submitted to chemoradiotherapy

ABSTRACT

Purpose

To verify the correlation between the voice handicap and swallowing quality of life in individuals submitted to chemoradiotherapy for laryngeal cancer treatment.

Methods

Cross-sectional, observational and quantitative study. Fourteen male individuals diagnosed with laryngeal cancer were submitted to exclusive chemoradiotherapy treatment. The individuals completed the Voice Handicap Index (VHI) and the Swallowing Quality of Life (SWAL-QOL) questionnaires. Data were submitted to descriptive and inferential analysis using Spearman’s Correlation Test to verify possible correlations among the scores of these instruments. Values of p ≤ 0.05 were considered statistically significant.

Results

No significant correlation was found between the total VHI and overall SWAL-QOL scores. However, there was significant correlation between the domain Functional of the VHI and the domains Fatigue and Social of the SWAL-QOL, between the domain Organic in the VHI and the SWAL-QOL domain Social, and total VHI score and SWAL-QOL domain Swallowing as a burden. Furthermore, chemoradiotherapy treatment had a greater impact on the voice than on the swallowing for the studied individuals.

Conclusion

The data showed a significant correlation between voice handicap and the impact of quality of life involving swallowing in individuals with laryngeal cancer submitted to chemoradiotherapy. This may affect individuals’ emotional and social aspects, impacting their overall quality of life.

Keywords
Chemoradiotherapy; Radiation Effects; Swallowing Disorders; Voice; Quality of Life

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