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Omaha Metro ENT

CHI Health Clinic Ear, Nose and Throat covers services and procedures for all of the subspecialties below.

Pediatric Services

Pediatric ENT care involves treatment of children from birth to adulthood. 

Common conditions evaluated and treated:

  • Recurrent ear infections
  • Hole in the eardrum/tympanic membrane perforation
  • Ear wax build-up
  • Dizziness
  • Hearing loss
  • Speech delay
  • Foreign bodies of the ear, nose, and throat
  • Neck masses
  • Feeding or breathing problems
  • Voice changes
  • Ankyloglossia/tongue tie
  • Recurrent tonsillitis
  • Recurrent adenoiditis/sinusitis
  • Tonsil and adenoid hypertrophy
  • Nasal polyps
  • Nasal obstruction
  • Snoring/sleep apnea
  • Allergy symptoms
  • Microtia

Our expert providers can treat a wide variety of voice and swallowing related conditions that a patient may have. 

Voice Conditions

  • Acid reflux disease
  • Aging voice
  • Chronic laryngitis
  • Head and neck cancer 
  • Muscle tension dysphonia
  • Singer's voice problems
  • Spasmodic dysphonia
  • Sulcus vocalis
  • Vocal fold nodules/polyps/cysts/granulomas, HPV/papillomas, or intubation Injuries
  • Vocal cord dysfunction, paralysis/paresis, or hemorrhage
  • Voice and swallowing deficits related to Parkinson's Disease

Diagnosis and Treatment

Voice Disorders

  • Videostroboscopy - A scope is briefly placed in the mouth or nose and you'll be asked to say various sounds. A magnified, slow-motion view of vocal cords is produced using a digital computer and strobe light.
  • Professional Voice including singers and public speakers
  • Botox Injection of the Larynx for Spasmodic Dysphonia - A small needle is used to inject Botulinum (botox) through the skin of the neck into the vocal cords. The botox weakens the vocal cord muscles so they no longer spasm.

Vocal Cord Cancer

Several tests are used to diagnose vocal cord cancer, including physical exam, lab testing, laryngoscopy, videostroboscopy, biopsy and biomarker tumor testing. Treatment includes endoscopic surgery or radiation therapy.

Benign Vocal Cord Disease

These could include nodules, polyps, cysts, webs and granulomas.

Lesions are diagnosed with a physical exam, videostroboscopy and other tests if needed. Treatment ranges from voice therapy and behavioral modification to, in some cases, surgery.

Treatment of Vocal Cord Paralysis

  • Injection procedures add bulk to the paralyzed vocal cord using a filler substance such as body fat, collagen or other filler. Medialization thyroplasty is an open surgical procedure performed under local or general anesthesia.
  • Voice Restoration following Total Laryngectomy - There are three methods to restore speech after total laryngectomy.
  • Electrolaryngeal voice device creates an artificial voice using a battery-operated device that generates an artificial vibration when you place the device against the skin or in the mouth.
  • Transesophageal voice prosthesis makes a surgical puncture between the airway and the food pipe and places a voice prosthesis to allow air from the trachea to vibrate a muscle and create voice.
  • Esophageal voice involves forcing air into your esophagus, which vibrates a muscle to create voice.
  • Treatment of Subglottic Stenosis including Balloon Dilatation - An angioplasty-type balloon can be placed in the airway and inflated for a short period. This can compress or stretch the stenosis.

Evaluation and Treatment of Swallowing Disorders

  • Endoscopic (through the mouth) Treatment of Zenker's Diverticulum - A special instrument is used to divide the common wall, open the diverticulum and split the muscle.
  • Functional Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing
  • Diagnosis and Treatment of Reflux - This is typically diagnosed with X-ray and endoscopy (viewing esophagus through a flexible scope). A manometry catheter may also be used to measure muscle function in the esophagus. Treatment usually begins with over-the-counter medications and avoiding personal trigger foods and beverages.

Helpful lifestyle changes include losing weight and quitting smoking. More advanced treatments include prescription medications and surgical procedures

Voice and Swallowing Care Specialists

Jill Swanson, MS, CCC-SLP
School: Gustavus Aldolphus College, BA; Idaho State University, MS 
Specialty: Head and Neck Cancer, Dysphagia - Modified Barium Swallow Studies

Rebecca Unzicker, MS, CCC-SLP
School: University of South Dakota, BA; University of Nebraska-Omaha; MS 
Specialty: Head and Neck Cancer, Dysphagia - Modified Barium Swallow Studies

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