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Keywords:

  • Vocal quality;
  • oral contraceptive pills;
  • menstrual cycle;
  • resonance;
  • DSI

Abstract

Objective/Hypothesis: The purpose of this study was to analyze the vocal quality and resonance (nasality and nasalance values) during the menstrual cycle in professional voice users using oral contraceptive pills (OCPs). Although professional voice users are more sensitive and aware of their vocal quality, no changes of voice and resonance characteristics were expected because OCPs create a stable hormonal balance throughout the menstrual cycle.

Study Design: The authors conducted a comparative study of 24 healthy, young professional voice users using OCPs. One assessment was performed between the 10th and 17th day of pill intake, when hormonal levels reached a steady state. The second assessment was performed during the first 3 days of menses, when no pills were taken and hormonal levels were minimized.

Methods: Subjective (perceptual evaluation of voice and nasality) and objective (aerodynamic, voice range, acoustic, Dysphonia Severity Index [DSI], nasometer) assessment techniques were used.

Results: The Mann-Whitney U test showed no significant difference between the perceptual evaluation of the voice and the nasality in the two assessments. The paired Student t test showed no significant difference regarding the maximum phonation time, the vocal performance, the acoustic parameters, and the DSI.

Conclusions: These findings indicate that OCPs do not have an impact on the objective and subjective voice and resonance parameters in young professional voice users. This information is specifically relevant to professional voice users who are more aware of vocal quality changes and ear, nose and throat specialists/voice therapists who treat professional voice users with voice problems/disorders. Further research regarding the impact of increased vocal load during the premenstrual or menstrual phase in professional voice users using OCPs should be considered.