There are characteristic changes to certain structures in the throat that are strongly associated with reflux. In this practice, endoscopic examination is the typical means of examining the throat and determining if laryngopharyngeal reflux may be occurring.
Flexible Fiberoptic Endoscopy
In this practice, it is very common for laryngopharyngeal reflux to be diagnosed following flexible endoscopic examination of the larynx/pharynx. For this examination, a nasopharyngoscope is passed through the passageway of the nose into the throat. The endoscope allows for visualization of the structures of the throat, in this way, assessing the overall health and status of the various structures. In some cases, you may referred for closer assessment of the larynx (voice box) using Stroboscopy.
Stroboscopy is an endoscopic procedure that utilizes advanced technology to closely examine the larynx. During this examination procedure a rigid endoscope is utilized in combination with strobe lighting. This allows for magnified imaging of the larynx and surrounding structures as well as for direct visualization of the vocal cords during vibration.
Many times, clinical changes indicating worsening, stability or improvement in the condition of the laryngeal structures are best assessed with stroboscopic examination. For this reason, your reflux may be monitored with periodic stroboscopy.
It is possible to be experiencing reflux without the presence of any notable symptoms. In this practice, there are characteristic changes in the throat that signal the likely presence of laryngopharyngeal reflux. After an endoscopic examination of your throat, you may be informed of the potential for some notable changes to be caused by reflux even without having any usual symptoms. As reflux can lead to potentially serious health effects, your doctor will likely choose to treat your reflux, even if you have no complaints in this regard. Further testing will be arranged to determine if reflux is contributing to the examination findings as well as determine how significant a reflux issue you may have.