Unilateral vocal cord paralysis secondary to recurrent laryngeal nerve stretching from mediastinal shift after pneumonectomy.


Ameen SAIFUL AZHAR1, Marina MAT BAKI1, Thean Yean KEW2.

1Department of Otorhinolaryngology and Department of Radiology2, University Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.



Unilateral vocal cord paralysis (UVCP) is not uncommon and can be due to various causes such as iatrogenic injuries, neoplasm or idiopathic. Damage to vagus nerve and its recurrent laryngeal nerve branch may paralyse the laryngeal muscles causing dysphonia, breathiness, vocal fatigue and aspiration.  We reported a rare case of left UVCP where the paralysis was caused by the stretching of left recurrent laryngeal nerve after the patient had undergone right pneumonectomy several years earlier due to lung fungal infection. Patient underwent injection laryngoplasty at our centre and her dysphonia improved temporarily.


Keywords: Laryngoplasty, medialisation, Pneumonectomy, Recurrent laryngeal nerve injuries, Vocal cord paralysis, unilateral.


Corresponding author: Professor Dr Marina Mat Baki, Otorhinolaryngology Department, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre, Jalan Yaakob Latif, Cheras, 56000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tel: +60196534308,  Fax: +60391456675

Email: marinamatbaki@ppukm.ukm.edu.my


Brunei Int Med J. 2018;14:50-54