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Breathy voice, Onset voice, throbbing pain on right side of neck. Could it be nodules?

Hello I am a singer and I've started noticing some vocal issues lately. I sing 3 nights a week for about 3 hours every night (I posted another post on my username page about the genres of music I sing and my experience). All was going well until about 3 weeks ago when I performed at one of my shows and as soon as I started singing I felt a shaky sound coming on. That same day I was warming up and practicing in my house 2 hours before the show. The next night I had to sing again, and the next night again. After this weekend I woke up with a breathy voice, an onset in my speaking voice, and pain on the right side of my neck and it felt like only my right vocal cord was bothering me. Usually when I sing I do get some throbbing and pain always on my right side, but that goes away the next day. I decided to go on vocal rest for one day but the problem continued, so I cancelled 2 of my gigs but still sang one and I could barely get through it. It's been three weeks and I still feel the same symptoms. I am going to the ENT on Monday but I still have to perform one of my gigs and I've never experienced any vocal issues or nodules. My voice hasn't felt the same since and it seems like I get better but then when I sing I get worse. I can still talk and sing but I feel a breathy onset, difficulty in my high registers, and pain on my right side only.


  • Furious_PhilFurious_Phil Moderator, Pro, 2.0 PRO, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 1,421
    Definitely sounds like some swelling/aggravation is happening to you.
    Any raspiness at all?
    Seriously take it easy for your last gig, maybe drink some Aloe Vera juice before and during it to help get you through it.
    Let us know what you find out from your ENT!


  • naimahbknaimahbk 2.0 PRO Posts: 6
    edited July 2018
    Hello Phillip! Thank you for the reply. What I have is more of a breathy sound than raspy. The onset is from a cause of bad vocal cord closure which could be due to a nodule or a polyp. All I know is that it improves when I don't talk and when I sing or talk it gets worse. I can't even do vibrato and that's not a good sign of healthy singing. I hear the air passing through one vocal cord. It's sad because singing is most of what I do (I'm also a vocal major in college so I need to get back to practicing) and with this problem I'm just sitting around the house not being able to practice or continue Ken's course. Anyhow I'll update what the ENT recommends. Thanks again!
  • Gaston_JaureguiGaston_Jauregui Moderator, Enrolled, 2.0 PRO, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 1,004
    @naimahbk Hi, I would do a TOTAL silence day, it´s not good that you wake up with one side hurting, this probably means you either are not supporting well, or you still havent gotten rid of certain tension while singing, another thing I would do at some point without stressing the chords to much, are very light EE scales and i mean very light just trying to bridge without forcing, but yes go and see an ENT
  • naimahbknaimahbk 2.0 PRO Posts: 6
    Hello @Gaston_Jauregui, thank you for your advice. I have already done one rest day, but I will give it another try. I also think that since I have physical pain on my neck, it could be due to still talking and singing with tension. I need to get rid of this neck, jaw and tongue tension and I've been trying for years but I still have it. Another question... On Ken's youtube channel he has a video on vocal nodules, polyps, ect... He says that Glutathione treatments can help with the rehabilitation. Have you ever heard of this by any chance? Thank you!
  • Gaston_JaureguiGaston_Jauregui Moderator, Enrolled, 2.0 PRO, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 1,004
    edited July 2018
    Hi @naimahbk I have not tried any medication since i haven´t had nodules, but many vocal nodule problems go away with rest and silence, Maybe not just one day, but a month or so, which is gonna take you the same as if you actually had the surgery and recovery from it, this was actually told to me by a ENT doctor here in Mexico that I took a course from , this doesn´t make me a dr obviously, but that´s what i was told, btw this DOESNT mean you have something, I would take serious rest, because the vocal chords don´t actually hurt, the pain comes from other muscles around them, so take serious rest, because again if you DO have something, you’ll have to rest anyway, and if the ENT tells you, you need surgery you´ll have to take a BIG rest, and lose a lot of money, but as I told you, most of the nodule problems go away if you DO take serious rest, so I would give it a shot on really resting, after that start really light on your warm ups, if you feel better, don´t pull chest just yet, if this doesnt work, then i would consider the ENT
  • Gaston_JaureguiGaston_Jauregui Moderator, Enrolled, 2.0 PRO, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 1,004
    @naimahbk how have you´ve been feeling?
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