European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology

, Volume 274, Issue 1, pp 337–346 | Cite as

Telephonic voice intelligibility after laryngeal cancer treatment: is therapeutic approach significant?

  • Erika CrosettiEmail author
  • Marco Fantini
  • Giulia Arrigoni
  • Laura Salonia
  • Agata Lombardo
  • Alessio Atzori
  • Valentina Panetta
  • Antonio Schindler
  • Andy Bertolin
  • Giuseppe Rizzotto
  • Giovanni Succo


The aim was to investigate telephonic voice intelligibility in patients treated for laryngeal cancer using different approaches. In total, 90 patients treated for laryngeal cancer using different approaches and 12 healthy volunteers were recruited. Each patient and each healthy control read a list of words and sentences during a telephone call. Six auditors listened to each telephonic recording and transcribed the words and sentences they understood. Mean intelligibility rates for each treatment were assessed and compared. Regarding words, the poorest intelligibility was noted for type II open partial horizontal laryngectomies, followed by total laryngectomies. The best intelligibility was found for transoral laser microsurgery, followed by radiotherapy alone. For sentences, the poorest intelligibility was noted for type II open partial horizontal laryngectomies, followed by chemoradiotherapy. The best intelligibility was found for radiotherapy alone and transoral laser microsurgery. More aggressive surgery as well as chemoradiotherapy correlated with significantly poorer outcomes. Transoral laser microsurgery or radiotherapy alone ensured the best telephonic voice intelligibility. Intermediate-advanced T stages at diagnosis also showed significantly poorer intelligibility outcomes, suggesting that T stage represents an independent negative prognostic factor for voice intelligibility after treatment.


Laryngectomy Transoral laser microsurgery Radiotherapy Chemoradiotherapy Laryngeal cancer Telephone communication 



Sincere thanks to Professor AR Antonelli for valuable suggestions and encouragement to continue research in the field of laryngeal oncology and to Miss V. Novanta and Dr. V. Carbonaro for their help as listeners.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

There are no competing interests for this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Erika Crosetti
    • 1
    Email author
  • Marco Fantini
    • 2
  • Giulia Arrigoni
    • 2
  • Laura Salonia
    • 3
  • Agata Lombardo
    • 2
  • Alessio Atzori
    • 4
  • Valentina Panetta
    • 5
  • Antonio Schindler
    • 6
  • Andy Bertolin
    • 7
  • Giuseppe Rizzotto
    • 7
  • Giovanni Succo
    • 2
  1. 1.Head and Neck ServiceCandiolo Cancer Institute, FPO IRCCSCandioloItaly
  2. 2.Otorhinolaryngology Service, Department of Oncology, San Luigi Gonzaga HospitalUniversity of TurinTurinItaly
  3. 3.Otorhinolaryngology Service, Department of Surgery, Città della Salute e della Scienza HospitalUniversity of TurinTurinItaly
  4. 4.National Institute of Metrological ResearchTurinItaly
  5. 5.L’altrastatistica srl, Consultancy and Training, Biostatistics officeRomeItaly
  6. 6.Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences “L. Sacco”University of MilanMilanItaly
  7. 7.Otorhinolaryngology ServiceVittorio Veneto HospitalTrevisoItaly

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