Sleep apnea is a condition where the airways are
blocked during sleep, causing patient to struggle for air
briefly wake up and their airways open again. People with sleep apnea
most often do not remember the apnea, but wake up feeling tired, even
after sleeping for many hours.
the body compensates for this
during the day, and sufferers will often find themselves not being able
to stay awake in situations with no physical activity. Not only does
the condition ruin the quality of sleep, it can cause a long line of
underlying causes are responsible for causing sleep apnea or
making the condition worse. Having surgeries to get rid of these health
issues will thus often cure the sleep apnea completely or at least
resorting to surgery for sleep apnea, make sure you have tried all the
available sleep apnea devices, that you have been to a sleep clinic for
a diagnosis, and to a specialist, such as a sleep
apnea dentist, to see if there aren't any other, non invasive
options - for example, a custom made mouthpiece.
used sleep apnea surgery that prevents collapsing of the soft palate,
tonsils, pharynx while sleeping - a condition that often causes the
disorder. It is mostly used for patients with large tonsils, a large
uvula, or a long, wide palate.
commonly it is not recommended for
people who are obese. The surgery is performed under general
anesthesia. The tonsils and/or the uvula are removed and the palate is
has a success
rate of 50%
-60% as a sleep apnea
surgical removal of the tonsils has been performed ever since
1000 BC. It is mostly used for
children with frequent or permanent issues with tonsils, however, it is
also sometimes recommended for adults that suffer from long periods of
having an intensely sore throat.
is a somewhat
controversial type of surgery and many doctors disagree on how and when
it should be used. Enlarged
tonsils can cause sleep apnea by
obstructing the airways somewhat or completely. So having a
tonsillectomy will often improve the condition.
type of surgery is often used for sinus issues, i.e. sinus
headaches, blocked sinuses, or a deviated
septum. Sinus issues are
often connected with sleep apnea, so this type
of surgery can help correct the problem.
plastic implants are inserted in the soft
palate, making it stiffer and more resistant. Often sleep apnea is
caused by the soft palate relaxing and falling back during sleep, so
the resulting scar tissue and stiffening of the palate can stop these
problems from occurring. This surgery is called the Pillar
is a type of sleep apnea surgery where
the tongue is pulled forward and its muscles attached to the lower jar.
This fixes issues where a deformed or enlarged tongue prevents
sufficient airflow during sleep.
When a person has an abnormally large tongue it can
fall back during sleep and obstruct air passage to the lungs.
called weight loss surgery, this is a type of
procedure performed on people who are dangerously obese, for the
purpose of losing weight. This weight loss is usually achieved by
reducing the size of the stomach with an implanted medical device
or through removal of a portion of the stomach
or biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch)
or by dissecting and re-routing the small intestines to a small stomach
pouch (gastric bypass
surgery). Obesity is a major cause of sleep apnea
and often losing weight will drastically improve the condition.
hyoid bone is situated in the neck. This
horseshoe shaped bone works in combination with other bones and muscles
to enable tongue movement and swallowing. Furthermore the hyoid bone
helps keeping the airways open during the night. Sometimes pulling the
hyoid bone forwards and attaching it to the thyroid cartilage, which is
just below it, can ease or help to completely get rid of sleep apnea.
can be caused by the structure of the jaw. If the upper or lower jaw or
both are either too small or large it can cause the jaw to fall back
and obstruct the airways when they are relaxed during
Advancement or orthognathic surgery, also sometimes
called Bimaxillary Advancement or Maxillomandibular are procedures, are
surgeries where the upper and lower jaw are moved forwards, correcting
jaw and receding chin issues.
type of sleep apnea surgery where a small,
opening is created in the neck, allowing air passage to
The opening is closed during the day, where the patient is able to
speak and breathe normally. During the night a valve is opened and air
can enter the lungs without meeting the obstruction in the throat.
As you can see, there are
many surgical options available for sleep apnea sufferers. First of all
the cause of the obstruction is determined, i.e. soft palate, nose,
excess fat. However, many doctors will only recommend them for sleep
apnea specifically, when
all other options have proven to be unsuccessful.
most widely used treatment for the
condition is a CPAP
device, a type of mask that blows a positive
pressure in to the mouth so that the airways can open fully. Some
patients are not able to use these devices for various reasons, and it
is these cases surgery is considered.
issue with sleep apnea surgery is that many of them have side
effects; some more severe than others. Tonsillectomy,
advancement and tongue reduction can cause slurring of words;
maxillomandibular advancement can cause the facial structure to
surgical procedures in general can cause an abundance of issues,
which is why doctors are often reluctant to do them. Before a procedure
is determined the doctor will look at the severity and cause of the
sleep apnea, and in most
cases chose the least obtrusive option.
Some side effects of the various sleep apnea surgeries include:
- Formation of
- Changes to
to the Snoring