Baptist Health Floyd’s Laryngectomee Support Group recently celebrated its one year anniversary on May 20. The group meets on the third Wednesday of each month at 3 pm in Baptist Health Floyd’s Paris Health Education Center.
Also known as a lost cord club, the support group is beneficial to the total rehabilitation of the laryngectomy patient. This is someone who has experienced cancer in the larynx and had their “voice box” or vocal cords removed. They must breathe through a stoma, or opening in the neck, and learn a new way to communicate. Laryngectomy patients struggle with effects of radiation and chemotherapy, worries of recurrent cancer and can have difficulty swallowing, breathing or speaking. An estimated 60,000 laryngectomy patients live in the United States.
The support group is led by Baptist Health Floyd speech pathologists, Susan Matthews, MS, CCC-SLP, who works with inpatients, and Denise Peak, MS, CCC-SLP, who provides home health therapy. Both experts have many years of experience teaching laryngectomy patients how to communicate and care for their stoma. The monthly support meetings include education, the latest techniques and helpful products available to improve independence. Many patients and family members who attend the group report enjoying the fellowship of others with the condition, meeting vendors and learning coping skills.
If you would like more information, please call (812) 948-6725.