The objectives of this study were to determine (1) the rates of complications, admissions to hospital and requirements for further surgery in patients fitted with tracheoesophageal fistula speech valves, and (2) whether any factors were predictive of complications. A case note review was undertaken of all patients undergoing a laryngectomy at Gartnavel General and Stobhill Hospitals over a 10-year period. One hundred patients were identified.
Forty-five patients had complications from their valves, most commonly granulation tissue formation. Thirty-five had a least one admission related to complications and 34 required further surgery. Sixty-seven were vocalizing with the valve.
Radiotherapy and valve type were not statistically significant in predicting complications in this study. Primary puncture was associated with a higher rate of complications, although the numbers undergoing secondary puncture were small.