What are the types of surgical procedures for sleep disorders?
There are different types of surgery for sleep apnea and snoring. Surgery may be a multi-step process involving more than one procedure. You may need to continue using CPAP even when surgery successfully reduces the severity of sleep apnea. It is important to follow up regularly with your sleep doctor after surgery.
Surgical options include:
This procedure, and other types of soft palate surgery, targets the back of your mouth. It involves removing and repositioning excess tissue in the throat to make the airway wider. The surgeon can trim down your soft palate and uvula, remove your tonsils, and reposition some of the muscles of the soft palate. UPPP and other soft palate procedures are the most common type of surgery for sleep apnea. But UPPP alone is unlikely to cure moderate to severe sleep apnea. It may be combined with surgeries that target other sites in the upper airway.
Upper airway stimulation therapy
Upper airway stimulation involves an outpatient procedure to implant a device that monitors your breathing while you sleep. The device stimulates the hypoglossal nerve, which controls your tongue’s movements, pushing it out of the way to keep the airway open.
To be eligible, patients must have moderate to severe sleep apnea that cannot tolerate CPAP or oral appliance. They also must be at least 22 years old and not significantly overweight. Patients will have to meet with a surgeon to see if this procedure is an option for them. Patients can expect to have a sleep study before and after the procedure.
Radiofrequency volumetric tissue reduction (RFVTR)
In this procedure, the surgeon uses a heated instrument to shrink and tighten the tissues in and around the throat. RFVTR can be used on the soft palate, tonsils and tongue.
Septoplasty and turbinate reduction
These surgical options open your nasal passage to improve air flow. Septoplasty straightens a bent or deviated nasal septum. This is the divider that separates the two sides of the nose. Turbinate reduction re