Heat and moisture exchangers as a treatment option in the post-operative rehabilitation of laryngectomized patients

Clin Otolaryngol Allied Sci. 1995 Dec;20(6):504-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2273.1995.tb01589.x.


A multi-institutional, prospective clinical study was undertaken to investigate whether the use of a heat and moisture exchanger (HME) in the period following total laryngectomy could prevent the development or reduce the severity of respiratory symptoms. Fifty-nine patients from three hospitals were provided with HMEs, either immediately post-surgery or, in the case of post-surgical radiotherapy, upon completion of the radiotherapy. For the total sample (n = 59) statistically significant improvements over time (between 3 and 6 months) could be found in forced expectoration (P < 0.05), in the perceived voice quality (P < 0.001), social anxiety (P < 0.001), social interactions (P < 0.001) and in feelings of anxiety and depression (P < 0.05). Repeated measures analysis of variance indicated statistically significant group differences over time in forced expectoration and stoma cleaning (P < 0.05). No statistically significant differences over time were noted between the regular and non(regular) HME user groups in voice quality or in various aspects of daily living.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Laryngectomy*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality of Life
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Respiratory Tract Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Respiratory Tract Diseases / rehabilitation*