We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
Original Investigation |

Conservative Management for Vocal Fold Polyps

Woo-Jin Jeong, MD1; Sun Joo Lee, MD1; Won Yong Lee, MD1; Hyun Chang, MD1; Soon-Hyun Ahn, MD1
[+] Author Affiliations
1Department of Otorhinolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, Korea
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2014;140(5):448-452. doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2014.243.
Text Size: A A A
Published online

Importance  Classically, surgery has been the mainstay of management for vocal fold (VF) polyps. However, a significant portion of patients experience spontaneous regression and may not require surgery.

Objectives  To report the results of conservative management for VF polyps, identify patients with polyps that are more likely to resolve, and describe the time course of resolution.

Design, Setting, and Participants  In this case series of 248 patients with VF polyps conducted presenting to a tertiary referral center, 94 patients were treated conservatively with at least 3 months of follow-up. All laryngoscopy photodocumentation and medical records were reviewed retrospectively.

Interventions  Conservative management with close follow-up.

Main Outcomes and Measures  Time course and resolution of VF polyps.

Results  Of 94 VF polyps, 43 (46%) showed a clinically significant reduction in size, and 36 (38%) resolved completely without requiring surgery. Multivariate analysis showed that VF polyps were most likely to resolve in female patients and in those with small-sized polyp and shorter symptom duration. Of the resolved polyps, 44% and 81% were resolved at 3 months and 8 months, respectively.

Conclusions and Relevance  Selected patients with VF polyp may benefit from conservative management, especially female patients and those with small, recent-onset polyps. The majority of polyps that resolve do so within 8 months, which can assist clinical decision making and counseling.

Figures in this Article

Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal


Place holder to copy figure label and caption
Figure 1.
Definition of Polyp Size

A, Large (category 3); B, medium (category 2); C, small (category 1); D, resolved (category 0).

Graphic Jump Location
Place holder to copy figure label and caption
Figure 2.
Categorization of Polyp According to Morphology and Color

A, Hemorrhagic; B, organized; C, translucent.

Graphic Jump Location
Place holder to copy figure label and caption
Figure 3.
Temporal Representation of Resolution of Vocal Fold Polyps

Nearly half of the polyps that resolved did so within 3 months, and more than 80% of polyps that disappeared did so in 8 months. Only a small portion of polyps resolved after this time frame.

Graphic Jump Location




Also Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
Please click the checkbox indicating that you have read the full article in order to submit your answers.
Your answers have been saved for later.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Submit a Comment


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.

Articles Related By Topic
Related Collections
PubMed Articles
Conservative management for vocal fold polyps. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2014;140(5):448-52.