Sleep Apnea

Surgical Correction of Sleep Apnea

What is sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea is usually multifactorial problem that results in the temporary cessation of breathing at night. When this occurs the patient usually wakes up resulting in very poor sleep and many other health problems including insomnia, high blood pressure, increased heart disease risk, increased baseline cortisol levels, and pulmonary hypertension amongst others.

There are many non-surgical treatments for sleep apnea including avoiding alcohol, sleeping pills and other sedatives at night. More advanced non-surgical treatments include wearing a CPAP facial mask, medications and oral splints, but in some more severe cases surgical correction maybe recommended.

Can sleep apnea be surgically corrected?

Sleep apnea in older patients the result of many factors, one of which is having an airway that is too small. This is called obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). In some people the ideal treatment for obstructive sleep apnea may be to move the jaws forward through jaw surgery.

How does surgical correction of sleep apnea work?

The facial skeleton supports the soft tissues of the face and airway. By moving the jaws forward in a natural and aesthetically pleasing way, we can improve sleep apnea significantly with many of our patients so that they may no longer need to wear a breathing mask at night.

Sleep apnea surgery is coordinated with an ENT, Sleep Medicine Specialist, Orthodontist, and general practitioner.  Close coordination of this results in better results and improvement for the patient.

Please note, that not all cases of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can be assisted with jaw surgery and in some cases a non-surgical treatment may work better.