Background. The consequences of a life-saving laryngectomy are still very distressing. The Eureka project "Artificial Larynx" aims at realization of an implantable artificial larynx to eliminate all drawbacks.
Methods. The artificial larynx will consist of artificial vocal folds of adjustable pitch and variable frequency during speech, an artificial epiglottis controlled by muscles, a valve mechanism to switch between breathing and speaking, and a tissue connector to connect the artificial larynx to the trachea.
Results. The valve mechanism has been designed and built and it can already be used as a tracheostoma valve. For the voice-producing element we intend to use mechanical and electrical vibrating principles. Potential principles are selected and will be built as prototype. A tissue connector with a porous surface has been designed. Research will focus on optimal materials for soft tissue ingrowth. To prevent bacterial and fungal adhesion to the artificial larynx the adhesion process to silicone rubber shunt valves has been analyzed. Bacterial colonization is followed by more harmful yeast strains. The materials resistance to this adhesion process will be developed.
Conclusions. Numerous problems have to be solved. Each solution. however, can be applied already to improve the existing rehabilitation process of laryngectomized patients.
|Title of host publication||Voice update|
|Subtitle of host publication||Proceedings of the 1st World Voice Congress, Oporto, Portugal, April 9-13, 1995|
|Editors||M. Pais Clemente|
|Publication status||Published - 1996|
|Event||1st World Voice Congress 1995 - Porto, Portugal|
Duration: 9 Apr 1995 → 13 Apr 1995
Conference number: 1
|Name||Excerpta Medica International Congress Series|
|Conference||1st World Voice Congress 1995|
|Period||9/04/95 → 13/04/95|