Factors influencing the longevity and replacement frequency of Provox voice prostheses.
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INTRODUCTION This study aimed to assess the factors that influence the longevity and replacement frequency of Provox voice prostheses following their placement. METHODS The medical records of 27 patients who received Provox voice prostheses after total laryngectomy and attended follow-up regularly between 1998 and 2012 were retrospectively reviewed. The success rate of the Provox voice prostheses (i.e. whether speech was achieved), quality of speech achieved, number and type of complications encountered, frequency of prostheses replacement and reasons for prostheses replacements were evaluated. RESULTS All 27 patients were men and their mean age was 63.0 (range 43–78) years. The mean follow-up period was 60.3 (range 1–168) months. Fluent and understandable speech was achieved in 85.0% of the patients. The mean duration before prosthesis replacement had to be performed was 17.1 (range 1–36) months. The most frequent complication was fluid leakage through the prosthesis. There was a strong positive correlation of 77.1% between the longevity of prostheses and postoperative follow-up duration (r = 0.771; p < 0.01). CONCLUSION The voice prosthesis is a tool that can be delivered in a practical fashion and replaced easily with no serious complications. It is a means by which speech can be restored, with a high success rate, after total laryngectomy. In the present study, we found that postoperative follow-up duration was the most important factor influencing the longevity of the Provox voice prosthesis.