What effects does it have?

What is it?

Surgery to increase the fundamental frequency (pitch) of the voice by increasing the tension of the vocal chords.

It's also known as Cricothyroid approximation.

How long does it last?

The amount of time these effects last for is currently not well understood.

More information

Warning

This technique is a surgery with a number of risks you need to understand before it is carried out. Common side effects are a quieter voice, a voice with less vocal range, or decreased clarity. The surgery may also result in no change to the pitch of the voice or a deepening of the voice 1.

Speech therapy is able to allow the majority of people to raise the pitch and change the qualities of their voice.

However, for a minority of people this is not the case, and they may consider voice surgery as an alternative. Unlike speech therapy, voice surgery carries significant risks of complications, and the effects may be irreversible.

While a variety of different approaches to increasing vocal pitch have been tried, there is currently little research into what the long term effects of these surgeries are, and how long the effects will last is unknown 2.

Voice surgery requires additional speech therapy after the surgery 3.

References

  1. 1 Song, Tara Elena and Jiang, Nancy (2017) “Transgender Phonosurgery: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis.” Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, p. 0194599817697050.
  2. 2 Van Damme, Silke, Cosyns, Marjan, Deman, Sofie, Eede, Zoë Van den and Van Borsel, John (2017) “The Effectiveness of Pitch-raising Surgery in Male-to-Female Transsexuals: A Systematic Review.” Journal of Voice, 31(2), pp. 244–e1.
  3. 3 Seal, Leighton J (2007) “The practical management of hormonal treatment in adults with gender dysphoria,” in Barrett, J. (ed.), Transsexual and other disorders of gender identity: A practical guide to management, Radcliffe Publishing, pp. 157–190.

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Page last updated: July 2017