Wednesday, August 6, 2014
Sleep apnea surgery
Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) remains the most effective treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). As many of you may know, CPAP is not well tolerated and usage of CPAP remains a significant problem. Some patients decide to pursue upper airway surgery for their OSA. However, surgery tends to be the least effective option for adults. In children, surgery is often the treatment of choice - it works quite well in fact. In adults, the more common procedure is called a uvulopalatopharyngoplasty or UP3. This involves removing the tonsils, the uvula, and part of the soft palate. A newer procedure called coblation channeling of the tongue or CCT involves surgically reducing the volume of the tongue. This article discusses research out of Australia showing a combination of UP3 with CCT may be more effective than either procedure alone. This may provide better results to patients who suffer from OSA but can not tolerate CPAP.