What is the role of prolonged joint immobility in cricoarytenoid (CA) fixation?

Updated: Jul 27, 2021
  • Author: Paul C Bryson, MD; Chief Editor: Arlen D Meyers, MD, MBA  more...
  • Print

Given the infrequent reports of this entity, a routine workup of vocal-fold immobility is appropriate when it is encountered. Of no surprise, standard etiology-based treatment protocols for arytenoid fixation have yet to be established. Increased awareness of this diagnosis and careful attention to the natural history of patients ideally guide the physicians' therapeutic care plan.

The relationship of prolonged joint immobility to joint fixation is a disputed point. Intuition and reason suggest that prolonged immobility may result in cricoarytenoid (CA) joint ankylosis, as it does in other diarthrodial joints. However, histologic studies have failed to demonstrate this phenomenon in the cricoarytenoid (CA) joint. Possible reasons for this inconsistency may include the non–weight-bearing status of these joints and their potential for low-amplitude passive motion with respiratory airflow.

Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!