He said temporary vocal loss isn’t unusual and typically resolves itself in a few days. “Unless it doesn’t,” he added. “And that’s where I am now.”
Burress isn’t quite in panic mode yet but he really isn’t sure if or when his voice will permanently recover.
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He visited Emory Voice Center Friday and came out encouraged. "Based on the scope, the doctor believes the nerve is intact," he wrote. "That means recovery is possible. It's a waiting game now and could be for a year."
This Wednesday, Burress said he will have a procedure to inject collagen into his non-functioning vocal cord. That fattens it up, he said, so it touches the functioning cord, allowing sound to emanate. “It’s a temporary Band-Aid and will last only a few months,” he said. “The idea is to restore some functionality while we wait things out” to see if his nerve will wake up and function again.
He also has no way to know how good his voice will sound come Wednesday. “It’s better than what I’m dealing with now,” he said.
While he's off the air, he is producing the morning show for Lisa Rayam and editing and planning behind the scenes. Denis O'Hayer, who retired as morning host last year, has been covering for Burress the past month. Sascha Cordner, Rayam's morning producer, is temporarily taking over Burress' afternoon on-air job starting today, said Christine Dempsey, who runs radio for Public Broadcasting Atlanta.
Burress said he expects another disc collapse in the future and may have to face more invasive surgery that is more complicated and intense than his most recent one but will avoid his vocal cords.