Aim and objective: Review recent advances and understanding of gender affirming voice care
Background: Treatment for gender dysphoria is increasingly recognized as medically necessary. Voice care is similarly as important as treatments focused on physical change.
Review results: This article reviews gender cues in communication as well as voice care options for voice masculinization and feminization. Voice masculinization techniques are poorly researched due to expectations that hormone replacement therapy (HRT) will result in adequate masculinization. HRT results are variable, however, and voice therapy and surgery are secondary options. Voice feminization has been better studied. While voice therapy and voice surgery are both options, voice therapy is often pursued first due to a low risk profile. Nonetheless, voice surgery techniques including Wendler glottoplasty (WG) and its variations are effective and safe.
Conclusion: Gender affirming voice care is critical in the treatment of gender dysphoria. HRT is often inadequate for voice masculinization. Further research in voice therapy and surgery options is needed. In voice feminization, voice therapy and voice surgery, particularly WG, have been effective in improving not only vocal pitch but also quality of life.
Clinical significance: Transgender individuals constitute a significant proportion of the population and frequently suffer from gender dysphoria. Gender affirming voice care is an essential component of treating gender dysphoria.
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