The Speech Endoscopy Clinic evaluates children and adolescents with speech disorders, which can result from congenital deformities such as a cleft palate, underlying medical disorders or syndromes, or vocal nodules, weakness or immobility.
The team consists of two pediatric otolaryngologists (Wen Jiang, M.D., and Shelby Leuin, M.D.) and a speech-language pathologist. They work closely with Rady Children’s Cleft Palate Team.
Speech disorders can be caused by a structural problem called velopharyngeal insufficiency, in which the soft palate does not close properly. To determine if the child has this problem, a nasopharyngoscopy (nasal endoscopy) is performed. The findings are used to make recommendations for speech therapy or surgical intervention.
What to Expect
During the nasopharyngoscopy, which only takes two to four minutes, the doctor inserts a flexible scope tube that has a small camera attached through the nose and slowly advances it into the back of the throat. There may be slight discomfort when this occurs. Pictures are then taken. The scope is removed and any discomfort should be gone. The throat may be numb from the anesthetic for an additional 20 minutes.
The clinic is offered once a month. To make an appointment, call 858-309-7701.