Surgical Treatment Options for Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)
When patients have limited success with conservative OSA treatments, surgeries of the nose, throat, or jaw may be recommended. Surgery may be used alone or with other treatments to achieve the best possible outcome. In general, OSA surgery has the most success when the patient’s weight is in a normal range.
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Surgical treatment options for OSA are offered by the highly trained ear, nose and throat surgeons at University Hospitals, and may include:
- Drug-induced sleep endoscopy (DISE)
During DISE, a flexible camera is used to look at the nose and throat during sleep-like conditions. DISE itself does not treat OSA, but it is able to offer more information on the location and pattern of upper airway collapse during sleep. DISE can be used to troubleshoot medical therapy and help determine best surgical options. DISE also helps to determine who is and is not an anatomic candidate for INSPIRE therapy, an innovative and relatively new surgical procedure for the treatment of OSA.
- Soft Tissue Surgery
Soft tissue surgery for OSA involves removing or rearranging structures inside the throat (i.e. tonsils, roof of the mouth, uvula, back of the tongue, or parts of the voice box). This can create more space for airflow and also stiffen parts of the throat, making them less apt to collapse. Nasal surgery does not usually improve throat collapse, but it can help as an adjunct to other medical or surgery therapies.Learn more about soft tissue surgery for OSA
- Bone Surgery
Bone surgery such as maxillomandibular advancement (MMA) serves to expand or advance the jaw bone, creating significantly more space in the throat.Learn more about bone surgery for OSA
- INSPIRE Upper Airway Stimulation (UAS) Surgery
Inspire therapy is the only surgical treatment that works inside your body. During the procedure a small device is implanted under your skin and below the collar bone. While you sleep, the device monitors your breathing and, when necessary, delivers mild stimulation to the hypoglossal nerve, which controls the tongue and other airway muscles. The stimulation helps the airway to remain open during sleep.