Dear Dr. Thomas,
One of my young students (age 12) developed a polyp/hemmoragh in early November from screaming/crying when she fell back and hit her head on the sharp table corner. Her singing up to that point was wonderful, with a 3.5 octave range, clarity, etc. Her singing voice was compromised greatly because of the screaming/crying event. I heard it right away when they called me the day after it happened, - her range was cut in half and the sound was raspy. The doctor to whom she went to, only advised her to be on voice rest for one week. After one week, she came to me for her voice lesson, but it was obvious that she was nowhere near vocal recovery, (so, no voice lesson). She went back to the laryngologist and they/he said to have a second week of voice rest. She did this, and after the second week, her voice was still nowhere near vocal recovery. Yes, I have seen photos at different stages of the recovery. A few days ago, she came in for a voice lesson, this time after about three sessions with a voice therapist working on breathing and airflow with lip trills, sound/no sound airflow exercises, etc., and still, the photo showed a slight swelling on either side of the cords where the polyp had been. Firstly, I do not understand why the doctor would have her receiving voice therapy when her cords are still swollen. Secondly, I do not understand why the doctor would have given her only one week of voice rest, then followed by only a second week of voice rest. In other instances, I am familiar with singers being totally silent for a month or even two, just to give the polyp and bleeding the best possible opportunity to heal completely, before beginning any type of voice therapy. Does voice therapy aide or hinder the recovery of still swollen vocal cords?