Prevalence of and Risk Factors for Self-Reported Voice Problems Among Carnatic Singers

Usha Devadas, Pooja Chandgal Kumar, Santosh Maruthy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Unlike Western opera singing, Carnatic singing requires powerful low pitched, loud voice. Singing in the right Shruti or pitch and appropriate breathing is given the main emphasis in this style of music. The present study was conducted to explore the prevalence of and possible risk factors for the self-reported voice problem (VP) in Carnatic singers. Method: This cross-sectional survey was conducted by distributing the self-reporting questionnaires to 190 Carnatic singers in and around the Mysuru and Bengaluru districts of Karnataka state, India, from December 2016 to April 2017. Results: The Carnatic singers were found to have high career (35%) and point (23%) prevalence rates of VP. Clenching of teeth, frequent cold, difficulty in hearing, stress related to the profession, and regular intake of medications for different health-related problems were some of the risk factors found to have a significant association with high prevalence of self-reported VPs. Around 22% of the Carnatic singers missed at least 2–5 singing performances due to VP during their career. Conclusions: Overall, the results of this study reveal a high prevalence rate of self-reported VP in Carnatic singers, and they also suggest that the VPs are associated with different risk factors like any other form of singers. Further studies are needed to understand the effect of VP and to prevent it in this group of professional voice users.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Voice
Publication statusPublished - 01-03-2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Speech and Hearing
  • LPN and LVN


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