Constant laryngitis and flu like symptoms with no flu


Q: I lose my voice and become really sick (bad flu like symptoms) at least twice a year. Always in the winter and spring time. It normally starts with just a cough that I cannot control and then I get progressively sicker. I normally go without a voice for about a month. After that I'm able to speak normally. I'm told that I don't have asthma and I don't have the flu either, so I'm just wondering what gets me so sick and why I'm always losing my voice.
I don't smoke or drink and I work in an office so I'm not around irritants

Symptoms:  Coughing, sneezing, fever(sometimes), muscle ache, no voice (always)

A:   Hi
Thank you for the question.

During the winter months, many people contract colds, some develop hoarseness. Laryngitis is an infection or inflammation of the larynx (voice box) while hoarseness describes a change in the voice. Vocal quality may sound breathy or forced or there may be a decrease in volume or pitch. These changes are usually due to disorders of the vocal cords (the voice box or larynx). Hoarseness can be caused by a failure of one or both vocal cords to move properly. This is known as vocal cord paresis (weakness) or paralysis (inability to move). Less common causes of hoarseness include allergies, thyroid problems, the normal menstrual cycle and other unusual diseases including amyloidosis, sarcoidosis. Here are a few tips:
-Quit smoking
-Drink lots of water
-Use a humidifier in the winter
-Avoid shouting
-Avoid caffeine
-Do not force the voice or whisper
-If you sing, seek professional voice training.

If the problem continues please seek medical attention. Your Doctor will help you out after examination. I hope this will help you. Take care.

Related Q&A

Q: I'm on my second cold in a month. Very plugged nose especially in bed - lots of blowing & coughing - sometimes a...

Q: My 3 year old boy has been unwell for around 7 days, flue like symptoms runny nose now has a slight cough but yesterd...

Q: Saturday evening Sept. 3rd. I came down with what I thought was some kind of flu. My daughter and grandkids had been...

Q: I have been having for about 2 weeks a sore neck, a low grade fever and the skin on my feet feel tight. Do I have ...

Q: I have had fevers, muscle aches, regular toilet stops, fatigue, loss of appetite, wheezing, consistent coughing which...


Dr. James Obaji M.D.

  • 247 Reviews
  • Family Physician

Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.

  • 190 Reviews
  • Family Physician

Dr. Pat Golden M.D.

  • 169 Reviews
  • Cardiologist

Dr. Kunaal Jindal M.D.

  • 112 Reviews
  • Plastic Surgeon