Menopause adversely affecs power and endurance of the limb muscles. However, despite clinical observations that menopause corresponds to negative changes of the voice, the direct effects of estrogen deprivation on the thyroarytenoid muscles are unknown. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of estrogen deprivation via ovariectomy on three neuromuscular parameters of the thyroarytenoid muscles using a rat model.
Cryosections of vocal folds of 20 (10 control and 10 ovariectomized) female rats were stained to label neuromuscular junctions, fiber size, or parvalbumin levels using immunohistochemical techniques and compared between experimental groups.
The neuromuscular junctions, thyroarytenoid fiber sizes, and parvalbumin levels of the vocal folds were similar between experimental groups.
The loss of estrogen did not change neuromuscular parameters of the vocal folds of adult female rats; therefore, vocal changes within the outer vibratory layers of the vocal folds may primarily be responsible for clinically observed menopausal vocal changes.
NA Laryngoscope, 2020.
© 2020 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.