The Laryngectomee Guide

By Itzhak Brook, MD, MSc

The Laryngectomee Guide has been made available on for patients and physicians by author and laryngectomee, Itzhak Brook, MD, MSc. The guide provides practical information to assist laryngectomees and their caregivers in dealing with medical, dental, and psychological challenges. Topics covered include the diagnosis and treatment of laryngeal cancer; side effects of radiation and chemotherapy; methods of speaking after laryngectomy; and how to care for the airway, stoma, heat and moisture exchange filter, and voice prosthesis. Also addressed are eating and swallowing issues, preventive care, use of CT and PET scans, emergency situations, anesthesia, and traveling as a laryngectomee.

Itzhak Brook, MD, MSc, is an Adjunct Professor of Pediatrics at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. He earned his medical degree and completed his residency at Hebrew University, Hadassah School of Medicine, in Jerusalem and obtained his master’s degree in pediatrics from the University of Tel Aviv in Israel. He completed a fellowship in adult and pediatric infectious diseases at the University of California, Los Angeles. For 27 years, he served in the Medical Corps of the U.S. Navy. Dr. Brook is the past chairman of the Anti-infective Drug Advisory Committee of the Food and Drug Administration. He has done extensive research on anaerobic and respiratory tract infections, anthrax, and infections following exposure to ionizing radiation. Dr. Brook was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2006. Two years later he had his larynx removed and currently speaks with a tracheoesophageal prosthesis. He is also the author of My Voice, a Physician’s Personal Experience with Throat Cancer.

DISCLAIMER: The American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and its Foundation (AAO-HNS/F) is providing The Laryngectomee Guide (the Guide) for educational and informational purposes only. The guide is written from a patient’s perspective, not by an otolaryngologist, and it is not intended to provide medical or legal advice and should not be treated as such.  AAO-HNS/F provides no warranty or guaranty as to the accuracy or completeness of the information provided in the Guide and is in no way responsible for its content. The book is being provided for free, and AAO-HNS/F is receiving no remuneration for making this book available. Patients should consult with their personal physicians before making any decisions about their medical care relating to laryngeal cancer or their pre- or post-surgical activities. Physicians and other providers reading this book should make independent, informed decisions about the care of their patients based on the individual facts and circumstances of each case.
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