Carole H. is an outgoing person who enjoys speaking with people and helping those in need. She holds a degree from Temple University’s Boyer College of Music and Dance in vocal production and voice training. Four decades after her graduation, Carole again turned to Temple, this time to the Temple Head & Neck Institute for help with strengthening her voice.
Presently, Carole is semi-retired and works in customer care for a large insurance company. “I spend most of my workdays speaking, a total of about 23 hours a week. I enjoy being able to assist and comfort people during a stressful time in their lives,” shares Carole, 60. “I’ve been doing this for almost seven years with no problems with vocal production until very recently. Then, I started to feel tightness and a slight soreness in my throat by the time my shift ended.”
Having never had any difficulty with vocal production since her early voice training at Temple’s Boyer College, she decided to consult with Temple’s Head & Neck Institute to learn the cause and begin rehabilitation of her voice.
Searching for Answers
Carole previously went to the Temple Head & Neck Institute about a year before, when she was treated for a hearing issue by Natasha Pollak, MD, who specializes in otology/ear care. “My experience at that time was very positive: I appreciated the cooperative, proactive, team approach to my issue and resolution at that time,” she says.
When Carole decided to see a specialist for her voice issues, she contacted Temple again and was referred to Nausheen Jamal, MD.
“I scheduled a convenient appointment at Temple Health’s Jeanes Hospital. “When I arrived I was promptly taken to an exam room and thoroughly evaluated,” she says.
Carole was diagnosed with a vocal fold paresis and prescribed voice therapy.
“Dr. Jamal then referred me to voice and speech therapist, Barbara Ebersole, who works on-site at Jeanes Hospital,” says Carole who resides in Philadelphia.
Restoring Vocal Production
Carole said Barbara’s demeanor and commitment to patient care was evident from the first appointment. “As a former singer, I was very impressed by Barbara’s warm manner, her comprehensive understanding about my condition, her thorough explanation of why I was having issues, and, most of all, her expertise in creating a simple regimen of vocal exercises for my specific issues,” Carole shares. “After two weeks of practice three times a day, about 10 minutes each, I was ‘healed.’ My symptoms were gone. I’ve had a recurrence of the symptoms once or twice since then, but a few repetitions of the exercise regimen puts me right back on track.”
Carole hopes by telling her story it can dispel some of the misconceptions about how long it can take to see specialists. “I was able to schedule prompt appointments and see specialists in convenient locations like Fort Washington and Northeast Philadelphia,” continues Carole. “It means so much to me to know that I have easy, prompt access to top-notch specialists and therapists at Temple. I can unreservedly recommend all of them to anyone experiencing any ENT issues.”