Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the result of airway obstruction during sleep. Patients with OSA either have smaller airway dimensions or a floppy airway with greater tendency to collapse. Surgery for OSA is aimed at enlarging airway dimensions as well as decreasing the collapsibility of the airway.
The airway is composed of the upper and lower jaws, tongue, tonsils, soft palate, and side wall of the throat. Different surgical procedures in the treatment of OSA have been developed to address these different components of the airway. Because the airway pattern and the severity of obstruction vary greatly between individuals, the success rate of a given surgical procedure also varies greatly. In general, as the severity of OSA increases, so does the invasiveness of the required procedures in order to achieve successful surgical outcomes.
The objective of this website is to provide patients an in-depth source of available surgical options for OSA. Possible sleep apnea surgical procedures are discussed in detail, including potential risks, complications and postoperative expectations. Relevant publications are recommended as additional informational tools.
Li KK, Powell NB, Riley RW, Troell RJ, Guilleminault C. Radiofrequency Volumetric Tissue Reduction for Treatment of Turbinate Hypertrophy – A Pilot Study. Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery; 119(6) 569-573, 1998.
Troell RJ, Powell NB, Riley RW, Li KK. Evaluation of a New Procedure for Nasal Alar Rim and Valve Collapse: Nasal Alar Rim Reconstruction. Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery; 122(2):204-211, 2000.
Guilleminault C, Kim Y, Palombini L, Li K, Powell N. Upper Airway Resistance Syndrome and its Treatment. Sleep; 23:S197-S200, 2000.
Powell NB, Zonato A, Weaver EM, Li K, Troell R, Riley RW, Guilleminault C. Radiofrequency Treatment of Turbinate Hypertrophy in Subjects Using CPAP. A Randomized Double Blind Placebo-Controlled Clinical Pilot Trial. Laryngoscope; 111:1783-1790, 2001.
Li KK, Powell NB, Riley RW, Troell, RJ. Radiofrequency Volumetric Reduction for Turbinate Hypertrophy. Operative Technique of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery; 11(1);24-25, 2000.
Li KK, Powell N, Riley R. Radiofrequency Thermal Ablation Therapy for Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics of North America; 14:359-363, 2002.