The uncertain results of aryepiglottopexy in our personal experience led us to develop, for patients with aspirations associated with the risk of severe pneumonitis, three types of intralaryngeal endoprostheses (ILEP) under the systematic cover of a tracheostomy. From September 1997 to May 1999, seven protheses were implanted in six patients. It was not possible to restore the full range of laryngeal functions, i.e. deglutition, phonation and respiration. However, our results, that were obtained with an intracricoidal prothesis closed at its upper end or equipped with a phonatory valve, are quite encouraging, even more so when in association with early alimentary re-education and support continuation of our trial. These ILEPs are simple to place, well tolerated, efficacious in preventing deglutition pneumonitis and easy to remove. Furthermore, the reversibility of this bloodless procedure facilitates the monitoring of a possible recovery of the laryngeal functions.
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