Reviewed by Speech-Language Pathologists Heather L. Hodges (Gustafson), MA, CCC-SLP, Julie J. Bergquist, CCC-SLP, MA, Kristina Johnston, MA, CCC-SLP

A detailed evaluation is needed to correctly identify vocal cord dysfunction (VCD) [or paradoxical vocal fold motion (PVFM)] and determine effective methods of treatment.

Ways to diagnose VCD include:

  • Laryngoscopy : A flexible scope is used to view movement of the vocal cords when a patient is symptomatic
  • Spirometry : Measurements are taken of airflow during respirations
  • Clinical Evaluation: Detailed information is obtained from patients

Based on the symptoms of VCD, people may be misdiagnosed and treated for asthma alone. It is important to note that asthma and VCD may co-exist. Some people with VCD don't have asthma. Different treatments will be effective for VCD and asthma.

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