ASA 127th Meeting M.I.T. 1994 June 6-10

1pSP35. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in vocal tract research: Clinical application.

Carol Gracco

Yale Univ. School of Medicine, Dept. of Surgery, Otolaryngology, 800 YPB, New Haven, CT 06511

Haskins Labs., 270 Crown St., New Haven, CT 06511

Clarence T. Sasaki

Yale Univ. School of Medicine

Richard McGowan

Haskins Labs.

Elizabeth Tierney

John Gore

Yale Univ. School of Medicine

This research demonstrates the application of three-dimensional analysis using MRI to study normal and abnormal aspects of speech and voice production. Subjects who undergo supraglottic laryngectomy often experience changes in vocal quality, even though the larynx is spared. Vocal tract area functions based on pre- and post-operative images and acoustic recordings demonstrate the correspondence between anatomy and acoustic product and quantify these categorical changes. Anatomically, the supraglottis is altered by removal of the base of tongue, epiglottis, and the false vocal folds. The correlation between changes in vocal tract shape and perceptual consequences relative to voice quality were assessed and quantified using three-dimensional reconstruction and computer assisted measurement analysis in addition to computer algorithms for assessment of glottal characteristics. For all subjects, changes in voice quality were highly correlated with specific variation in vocal tract area function and changes in the sound source at the glottis. The development of methods for studying the functional effects of surgical alteration of the vocal tract are highly relevant to clinical study as well as basic studies of the articulatory and acoustic processes. [Work supported in part by NINDCS/NIH Grant Nos. DC-00865, DC-01147, DC-00044, DC-00121.]