PHONETOVOX: A Novel Prototype Device for Alaryngeal Speech

  • Michaelsam E. Econ Department of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery St. Luke’s Medical Center
  • Ronaldo G. Soriano Department of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery St. Luke’s Medical Center
Keywords: Laryngectomy, Alaryngeal speech, Laryngeal Cancer

Abstract

Objective: To describe a prototype improvised hand held device for alaryngeal speech.

Methods:

Design: Instrument Innovation

Setting: Tertiary Private Hospital

Participants:        Four listeners with normal hearing, were native Tagalog-speakers and had no previous experience with alaryngeal speech types participated in initial trials.

 

Results: The prototype PHONETOVOX was fabricated using a soundproofed cellphone casing with an intra-oral sound port attachment and a cellphone was loaded with Pocket Talkbox v. 1.4.0 software. The device was tested for its ability to produce intelligible speech by using the cellphone as a substitute for the larynx using oral cavity resonators and articulators, producing a synthesized sound mimicking the human voice. The PHONETOVOX produced intelligible words. Initial testing using a C-V-C Tagalog Word List had 4 listeners identify 34, 35, 47, and 54 out of 93 words (37 to 58%), with an overall average intelligibility of 46%.

 

Conclusion: Despite its restrictions in articulation and the wide range of results from the four listeners, our initial results may suggest the potential of PHONETOVOX as another modality for alaryngeal speech comparable to the 36 – 38 % intelligibility of commercially-available devices. Further trials with actual laryngectomees are needed to further establish intelligibility and acceptability.

 

Keywords: Laryngectomy, Alaryngeal speech, Laryngeal Cancer

 

Published
2018-11-13
How to Cite
1.
Econ M, Soriano R. PHONETOVOX: A Novel Prototype Device for Alaryngeal Speech. PJOHNS [Internet]. 13Nov.2018 [cited 13Dec.2018];33(2):48-2. Available from: https://pjohns.pso-hns.org/index.php/pjohns/article/view/279
Section
Surgical Innovation and Instrumentation