Hoarseness is a symptom of a voice disorder, indicating a disturbed sounding of the voice.


Hoarseness occurs as a result of a disease of the larynx. At the same time, organic and functional voice disorders are distinguished, i.e. those that arise due to a change in an organ, and those that arise due to a dysfunction of an organ. Inflammation, lack of exercise or destructive influences (eg smoking) or damage can lead to organic changes. Functional voice disorders can occur when there is an imbalance between individual voice abilities and the actual load on the voice.


Regular preventive examinations are recommended when there is a strong load on the vocal apparatus or when there are risks (for example, smoking or working in dusty conditions, frequent heartburn).

Persons experiencing a high load on the vocal apparatus should regularly exercise their voice and not expose their voice to possible risks.


Voice disorders can manifest as voice limitations (eg, hoarseness, limiting the maximum allowable load to the complete disappearance of the voice). A feeling of pressure or scratchy sensation in the throat, dryness, frequent coughing, and frequent coughing may indicate a disease of the larynx.


Diagnostics includes the following procedures:

  • examination of the larynx and resonator spaces above the larynx. Various methods are used here, for example, stroboscopy or high-speed glottography.
  • measurements of the acoustic characteristics of the voice
  • voice recording.

Individually tailored further examinations to determine effects on the vocal apparatus (e.g. hearing examinations, since hearing is necessary to control one's own voice). Examinations take a certain amount of time, but, as a rule, do not represent a large burden for the patient.


Treatment is prescribed individually, depending on the type and degree of the disorder, on the complaints and expectations of the patient. With organic disorders, surgical intervention may be recommended, with functional disorders, in most cases, therapeutic exercises are indicated.