We evaluated the clinical and radiological findings in 35 patients with submucosal laryngeal masses. The presenting symptoms were hoarseness, stridor, dysphagia and external neck mass. In 20 cases an important delay between the onset of symptoms and direct laryngoscopy was found. There was a considerable delay between laryngoscopy and definitive diagnosis in 13 cases due to repeated negative biopsies. Computed tomography pointed out the location and extension of the masses in all cases. In 27 mass lesions CT allowed correct prediction of the malignant or benign character of the lesion. In 6 cases no reliable differentiation could be made. The lesion was mischaracterised in 2 cases. Magnetic resonance imaging was also performed in 4 patients, and showed the extent of the lesion better; in 1 case MRI narrowed the differential diagnosis. In the case of a negative biopsy result, radiological findings should incite further investigation, reducing the possible delay between the onset of symptoms and definitive diagnosis.