Users' questions

What happens during a laryngospasm?

What happens during a laryngospasm?

Laryngospasm is a rare but frightening experience. When it happens, the vocal cords suddenly seize up or close when taking in a breath, blocking the flow of air into the lungs. People with this condition may be awakened from a sound sleep and find themselves momentarily unable to speak or breathe.

How do you breathe during laryngospasm?

A few simple techniques may stop the spasm:

  1. Hold the breath for 5 seconds, then breathe slowly through the nose. Exhale through pursed lips.
  2. Cut a straw in half. During an attack, seal the lips around the straw and breathe in only through the straw and not the nose.
  3. Push on a pressure point near the ears.

How does hypocalcemia cause laryngospasm?

Hypocalcemia causes an increased neuromuscular irritability that can lead to muscular cramps, circumoral numbness, and paresthesia of the feet and hands—or even to medical emergencies such as laryngospasm, myocardial dysfunction, seizures, generalized or focal tonic muscle cramps in severe cases.

How do you know if you have laryngospasm?

Laryngospasm is identified by varying degrees of airway obstruction with paradoxical chest move- ment, intercostal recession and tracheal tug. A characteristic crowing noise may be heard in partial laryngospasm but will be absent in complete laryn- gospasm.

What does it mean when you have laryngeal stridor?

Laryngomalacia (LAYR inn go mah LAY shah) is also called laryngeal stridor. It results from a weakness of parts of the voice box (larynx) that is present at birth.

How long does it take to convert laryngospasm to stridor?

Properly performed, it will convert laryngospasm within one or two breaths to laryngeal stridor and in another few breaths to unobstructed respirations. Figure 1. Schematic illustration of laryngospasm notch bounded anteriorly by the condyle of the mandible, posteriorly by the mastoid process, and superiorly by the base of the skull.

What happens when you have a laryngospasm?

Once you are able to breathe again, a high-pitch squealing sound, known as stridor, will emerge from your airway. Your airway will open, and regular breathing will start. Although a laryngospasm only lasts 30 to 60 seconds, it can seem like an eternity. Many laryngeal spasm episodes have an association with GERD symptoms.

What are the symptoms of a laryngeal spasm?

Many laryngeal spasm episodes have an association with GERD symptoms. These may include heartburn, nausea, coughing, chest pain, difficulty in swallowing, soreness in the throat, or hoarseness when speaking. Since various health conditions usually trigger the spasms relating to this condition, laryngospasm treatment focuses on the source.