Alerts and Notices
SynopsisReflux laryngitis is inflammation of the larynx associated with reflux of gastric secretions. Thought to be an atypical manifestation of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), reflux laryngitis was historically known as supra-esophageal GERD. Symptoms can include voice quality changes, dysphagia, nonproductive cough, chronic throat clearing, hoarseness, globus sensation, dysphonia, and dyspepsia. The condition may be associated with subglottic stenosis, vocal polyps, Reinke's edema, vocal fold granulomas, and laryngospasm.
Behavior changes can decrease symptoms; these include weight loss, avoidance of exacerbating exposures such as alcohol and coffee, and quitting smoking. Medical therapy includes proton pump inhibitors, and in select patients, surgical Nissen fundoplication may be an option. Ruling out serious disorders, such as laryngeal cancer, should be completed prior to initiating medical therapy.
K21.9 – Gastro-esophageal reflux disease without esophagitis
427780002 – Laryngitis due to gastroesophageal reflux
Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls
- Infectious laryngitis (diphtheria, Epstein-Barr virus, human papillomavirus, pertussis)
- Vocal cord polyps or nodules
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Foreign body ingestion
- Thyroid malignancy