Sidra Medicine Expands ENT Services


QF Entity performs first pediatric vocal cord injection medialization procedure


06 February 2024, Doha, Qatar Sidra Medicine, a member of Qatar Foundation, has expanded its pediatric Otolaryngology (ear, nose and throat) services to address vocal cord immobility challenges in children.

The Otolaryngology division has setup a specialized multidisciplinary clinic that focuses on dysphonia (hoarseness); unilateral vocal cord immobility; bilateral vocal cord immobility; aspiration and dysphagia (swallowing difficulties) for patients up to the age of 18.

Dr. Faisal Abdelkader, division chief of Otolaryngology at Sidra Medicine said: “Over the past six years, our services have grown to cover all aspects of complex pediatric otolaryngology such as difficulty in breathing/stridor; hearing loss; drooling and chronic rhinosinusitis. We are one of the leading hospitals that conducts complex airway reconstruction and can remove tumours or growths in the head and neck. The addition of these new services to address vocal cord immobility challenges highlights our range of specialized procedures that are primarily designed to be as minimally invasive and pain-free as possible for our young patients.”

The clinic has seen an increase in unilateral vocal cord immobility cases with children coming in with weak voices and/or swallowing difficulties following cardiac surgery or traumatic injuries to the brain and/or airway. This puts them at risk of aspiration (whereby food or liquid can accidently enter their airway), as their vocal cords are unable to close completely during swallowing.

“If you notice your child has a hoarse voice for more than four weeks, then we recommend visiting us to get a thorough assessment done such as a laryngoscopy; which is a visualization of the vocal folds through the nose. The procedure is minimally invasive and lasts less than five minutes. This will help us identify the issue and recommend the right treatment,” continued Dr. Abdelkader.

Dr Taseer Din, attending physician at Sidra Medicine, recently led the ENT team to perform a vocal cord injection medialization on a child experiencing dysphonia and swallowing issues, putting him at risk of aspiration.

“This was the first time we performed an injection medialization on a child in Qatar, and is a testament to our multidisciplinary approach to care - right from the surgical staff in the operating room to our post-operative speech and language rehabilitation service. The procedure is minimally invasive, whereby we moved the patient’s nonfunctioning vocal cord into a position that allows the voice box to better protect itself and project a better voice quality,” said Dr Din.

The patient was discharged a day after the procedure. Following a post-procedural swallow study, performed by Ms. Busisiwe Tshabalala from the hospital’s speech and language pathology service, the child now has a much stronger voice and is able to swallow and speak without any aspiration documented.
For more details about Sidra Medicine’s ENT services, please visit: Otolaryngology (ENT) | Sidra Medicine.