Vocal cords

From WikiLectures

Laryngoscopic image

The vocal cords are the basic organ of the vocal (phonation) system.

Anatomy[edit | edit source]

The glottis is a sagittally oriented slit creating the voice in the middle of the larynx, between the plicae vocales, the basis of which is the lig. vocale and m. thyroarytaenoideus - to lig. vocale attached from the outside. This is where the narrowest part of the airways, the rima glottidis (glottic slit), is located. On the glottis we distinguish two parts: pars intermembranacea - the ventral and larger part between the proper vocal ligaments, and pars intercartilaginea - the dorsal short section between the cartilagines arytaenoideae.

Just above the glottis, between the level of the plicae vocales and the plicae vestibulares, the expansion of the center of the larynx to both sides creates the ventriculus laryngis – a laterally arched protrusion. The ventriculus can be connected laterally on both sides by a small protrusion - the sacculus laryngis. It is well developed in a newborn, only indicated in an adult, but sometimes there may be more.

Voice Creation[edit | edit source]

Photo of rima glottidis
Movement of the vocal cords

The rima glottidis changes its width and the tension of its edges under the influence of the laryngeal muscles, which control the movements of the laryngeal cartilages. By vibrating the plicae vocales with the flow of air during exhalation is produced in the slit sound, which then resonates in the cavities located above (larynx, pharynx, oral cavity, nasal cavity, paranasal sinuses) acquires the color of the human voice. Differences in the structure of the larynx of men and women cause differences in the pitch of the voice. A man's vocal cords are 24-25 mm, the larynx is generally more spacious. Therefore, men have a voice approximately an octave lower than women. The length of female vocal cords is around 20 mm. 

Links[edit | edit source]

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External links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  • CIHÁK, Radomír and Miloš GRIM. Anatomy. 2nd  3rd edition. Prague: Grada, 2013.  ISBN 978-80-247-4788-0 .