Ortner syndrome, also known as cardiovocal syndrome, is characterized by hoarse voice resulting from left recurrent laryngeal nerve palsy secondary to a cardiovascular disorder.
Left recurrent laryngeal nerve palsy in this condition is due to traction or compression of the nerve between the thoracic aorta and pulmonary artery 1-7. The left recurrent laryngeal nerve arises from the left vagus (X) nerve and passes underneath the aortic arch posterior to the ligamentum arteriosum before it ascends into the left tracheoesophageal groove to reach the larynx 8.
Other causes include 1-7:
- aortic pathologies (e.g. thoracic aortic aneurysm)
- patent ductus arteriosus
- atrial septal defect
- ventricular septal defect
- recurrent pulmonary embolism
- Eisenmenger syndrome
- primary pulmonary hypertension
History and etymology
It is named after Norbert Ortner (1865-1935), an Austrian physician 6.
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- 7. Solanki SV, Yajnik VH. Ortner's syndrome. Indian Heart J. 1972;24 (1): 43-6. Pubmed citation
- 8. Paquette CM, Manos DC, Psooy BJ. Unilateral vocal cord paralysis: a review of CT findings, mediastinal causes, and the course of the recurrent laryngeal nerves. Radiographics. 2012;32 (3): 721-40. doi:10.1148/rg.323115129 - Pubmed citation