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Karen Wicklund

wicklund@singershealth.com

Menstrual Cycle Dysphonia

The Efficacy of PMS Self-Help Methods in the Alleviation of Premenstrual Vocal Cord Syndrome Symptoms
ABSTRACT

by Dr. Karen Wicklund, July 2, 2000
NATS National Convention, Philadelphia

IMPORTANT: The information contained in this presentation is intended for educational purposes only. It is not provided in order to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, illness, or injured condition of the body, and the authors, sponsoring organization, publisher, printer(s), and distributor(s) accept no responsibility for such use. Those individuals suffering from any disease, illness, or injury should consult their physician.

Some studies regarding female singers have reported that their vocal abilities can be adversely affected just prior to the time of menstruation (Abramson et al. and Brown and Hollien). In addition, otolaryngologists have reported cases of alterations in the appearance of the vocal folds of singers just prior to the onset of menstruation (Abitbol, Brodnitz, Frable, and Davis and Davis). In some opera performer's contracts, "grace days" actually permit the performer to refrain from singing during the premenstrual cycle. This paper will review some of the current literature regarding the phenomenon of menstrual dysphonia, and then will look at the efficacy of various self-help methods in premenstrual syndrome treatment of singers.

Selected references:

Abitbol, J. et al. (1989) "Does a hormonal vocal cord cycle exist in women? Study of vocal premenstral syndrome in voice performers by videostroboscopy - glottography and cytology on 38 women." Journal of Voice 3:2: 157-162.

Abramson, A.L., B.M. Steinberg, W.J. Gould, E. Bianco, P. Kennedy, and R. Stock. (1984) "Estrogen receptors in the human larynx: clinical study of the singing voice." In : Lawrence, V.L. ed. Transcripts of the thirteenth symposium on care of the professional voice. New York: The Voice Foundation: 409-13.

Brodnitz, F.S. (1971)"Hormones and the human voice." Bulletin of the New York Academy of Medicine, 47: 183-191.

Brown, W.S. and Hollien, H. (1983). Effects of menstruation on the singing voice, Part I: History and current status. In Lawrence, V.L. (ed.) Transcripts of the twelfth symposium on care of the professional voice. New York: The Voice Foundation, 112-116.

Chihal, H.J. (1990). Premenstrual Syndrome: A Clinic Manual. 2nd ed., Dallas: Essential Medical Information Systems: 88-105.

Coleman, R. (1969). Effect of median frequency levels upon the roughness of jittered stimuli," Journal of Speech and Hearing Research 12, 330-336.

Davis, C., and M. Davis. (1993) "The effects of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) on the female singer." Journal of Voice 7: 4: 337-353.

Day, C.S. (1982). Effects of menstruation on the singing range and fundamental frequency of female singers. Unpublished master's thesis, University of Florida.

Fairbanks, F. (1960). Voice and Articulation. New York: Harper and Row.

Frable, M. (1962) "Hoarseness, a symptom of premenstrual tension." Archives of Otolaryngology, 75: 80-82.

Golay, P. (1981). Effects of menstruation on fundamental frequency of female voices. Unpublished master's thesis, Univeristy of Florida.

Higgins, M.B. and Saxman, J.H. (1989). Variations in vocal frequency perturbation across the menstrual cycle. Journal of Voice 3 (3): 233- 243.

Human Nutrition Information Service (1992). The Food Guide Pyramid, Bulletin No. 252. Hyattsville, Maryland: U.S. Dept. of Agriculture: 2-3.

Lark, Susan. (1984). PMS Self-Help Book. Los Angeles: Forman Publishing .

Large, J. and Patton, R. (1981). Effects of weight training and aerobic exercise on singers. Journal of Research in Singing 4: 23-32.

Silverman, E. and Zimmer, C.H. (1975). Speech fluency fluctuations during the menstrual cycle. Journal of Speech and Hearing Research 18: 202-206.

Sundberg, Johann. (1970). Formant structure and articulation of spoken and sung Vowels," Folia Phoniatrica 22, 28-48.

Wicklund, Karen and Anthony Seikel. (1998) Fundamental changes in singers and non-singers due to menstruation. Medical Problems of Performing Artists (September): 100-103.

Wicklund, Karen. (1996). A quantitative survey of premenstrual syndrome and menstrual dysphonia symptoms experienced by singer/voice teachers. NATS Journal of Singing (May/June): 19-22.

Wilson, F. and Purvis, J.A. (1980). A study of selected vocal behaviors during the menstrual cycle of trained singers. Journal of Research in Singing 3: 15-24.

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Important: The information on this website is intended for educational purposes only. It is not provided in order to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease, illness, or injured condition of the body. The authors, publisher, printer(s), and distributor(s)/website provider(s) accept no responsibility for such use. Those individuals suffering from any disease, illness, or injury should consult their physician.

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