Research Article| Volume 34, ISSUE 3, P490.e11-490.e21, May 2020

Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation Combined With Voice Therapy in Women With Muscle Tension Dysphonia

Published:December 07, 2018DOI:



      The purpose of the present study was to investigate the effect of Voice Therapy (VT) with and without Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) in women with Muscle Tension Dysphonia (MTD).


      A total of 20 women with MTD participated in the study. Participants underwent evaluation of auditory-perceptual assessment, acoustic voice analysis, Vocal Tract Discomfort (VTD), and musculoskeletal pain before and after the treatment. The participants were divided into two groups: (1) TENS + VT group (10 participants) and (2) VT group (10 participants). Both groups received 10 sessions of treatment, twice a week, each lasting 50 minutes. The statistical analysis was performed using Wilcoxon signed ranked and Mann-Whitney U tests (P < 0.05).


      After VT, significant improvements were observed in all auditory-perceptual parameters and all VTD items except for the tickling frequency and severity. The VT caused significant reduction in the frequency of pain in anterior neck, posterior neck, and the larynx. Also, VT resulted in a significant reduction in pain intensity only in the larynx. After VT + TENS, significant improvements were observed in all auditory-perceptual parameters, shimmer, and all VTD items. Moreover, the VT + TENS led to a significant decrease in the frequency and intensity of pain in anterior neck, posterior neck, the larynx, masseters, shoulders, and upper back. The findings of between-group comparison after treatment showed significantly more reduction in the frequency (dry and pain items) and severity (tight and pain items) of the VTD in VT + TENS group compared with VT group. Regarding the musculoskeletal pain, significantly more reduction in the frequency and intensity of pain in anterior neck and the larynx was observed in VT + TENS group compared with VT group.


      The VT and VT + TENS could lead to positive outcomes in auditory perceptual assessment, acoustic voice analysis, the VTD, and assessment of musculoskeletal pain. In some items of frequency and severity of VTD scale and assessment of musculoskeletal pain, VT + TENS also produced better results compared with VT. As a result, TENS was recommended as a complementary therapy for patients with MTD, especially when these patients had more complaints about VTD and musculoskeletal pain.

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