A member asked:

My r rln was cauterized 2 sonometers during thyroidectomy. my voice is gone. what is the likelihood of a rln healing from cauterization?

3 doctors weighed in across 2 answers

Unknown: If you mean that your recurrent laryngeal nerve was injured via heat cauterization there is a chance for recovery but it can take 6 months. Furthermore with time and voice therapy or vocal cord injection or thyroplasty you can still have a good voice as long as both nerves weren't injured

Answered 5/5/2015

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Low likelihood: If the nerve was truly cauterized during the surgery, this injury frequently does not recover. However, recovery of RLN injury can take 12 months or more. If your voice is very weak and/or you are having difficulty or coughing with swallowing, there are temporary procedures to reposition the paralyzed vocal cord while you wait for recovery. An ENT physician should be able to offer those to you.

Answered 10/23/2014

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