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  • Reviewed on 1/11
    By Speech-Language Pathologists

    • Carly Bergey, MA, CCC-SLP
    • Julie Bergquist, MA, CCC-SLP
    • Heather Hodges, MA, CCC-SLP
    • Kristina Johnston, MA, CCC-SLP
    • Courtney Millar, MA, CCC-SLP

      View full profiles

Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD): Lifestyle Management


Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD) can be treated. Patients don't have to live with the frustration or anxiety of "not being able to get a good breath", chronic coughing, frequent throat clearing or intermittent hoarseness/wheezing.

A speech-language pathologist can provide treatment for VCD. 

Initial Consult

A speech-language pathologist will:

  • Assist in the identification of triggers
  • Provide education on anatomy and function of the throat, larynx and vocal cords
  • Provide education on techniques to prevent and eliminate VCD and regain control
  • Provide techniques to minimize abusive behaviors such as chronic coughing and frequent throat clearing

Follow-up Visits

A speech-language pathologist will:

  • Review and reinforce techniques
  • Provide support and encouragement for consistent application

Irritant Challenge 

A speech-language pathologist will:

  • Provide education/support for implementation of techniques to de-escalate VCD when exposed to triggers

Exercise Challenge 

A speech-language pathologist will:

  • Provide education/support for implementation of techniques to de-escalate VCD when triggered with exercise
  • Common challenges include walking, running, sprinting, biking, skating, swimming, dancing/cheering, wrestling, basketball and baseball
More Lifestyle Management Information
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Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD) Treatment Programs

National Jewish Health offers a variety of programs that can help treat people with known or suspected vocal cord dysfunction (vcd).

Learn more.

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