Health Encyclopedia

Laryngitis

Laryngitis

Laryngitis is an inflammation of the voice box, or larynx. Laryngitis is usually caused by a virus, such as a cold, and is temporary, going away within a week or two.

The larynx is located in the throat just above the windpipe (trachea) and is made up of cartilage, ligaments, and muscles. The two vocal cords in the larynx are covered with a mucous membrane. When air passes through the vocal cords, they vibrate and produce sound. When the larynx is inflamed or injured, the voice may be raspy, hoarse, or lower in pitch, or it may be only a whisper. Sometimes a person with laryngitis has no voice at all.

Last Revised: October 9, 2012

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Donald R. Mintz, MD - Otolaryngology

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

© 1995-2013 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.

USNWR 2013-2014Magnet Hospital RecognitionConsumer Choice2014 Best DoctorsJoint Commission Report

Disclaimer: The information on this website is for general informational purposes only and SHOULD NOT be relied upon as a substitute for sound professional medical advice, evaluation or care from your physician or other qualified health care provider.