Dr. Vishal Rao, a Bangalore based oncologist, has developed a voice prosthesis that can help throat cancer patients speak after surgery. And unlike the extremely expensive ones available in the market today, this device will cost just Rs. 50.
Dr. Rao is an oncologist and head and neck surgeon at the Bangalore-based HealthCare Global (HCG) Cancer Center. He has developed the Aum Voice Prosthesis – a voice prosthesis device that can help patients whose voice box has been removed, to speak and eat properly.
Voice prosthesis is a device made of silicone. It is used to help patients speak when the entire voice box, or larynx, has been removed. In such cases, the windpipe and food pipe are separated from each other, either at the time of the surgery or later, creating an opening between the two. The device is then placed in this opening. Dr. Rao explains that the voice box basically vibrates with the help of air provided from the lungs. The mechanism behind the prosthesis is that instead of the vocal cord vibrating, the food pipe is made to vibrate with the back end of the prosthesis sitting at the food pipe.