Ear, Nose, and Throat
CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. It is a treatment that is used for people who have breathing problems. The CPAP keeps the airways open using mild pressure. Treatment for this breathing problem involves a CPAP machine. This machine has three main parts: a mask, a tube, and a motor. The motor is what blows the air into the tube. The tube is what connects the mask to the motor. And the mask is the device that fits over the mouth and nose, using straps to keep it in place. The machines are small and are not heavy. The do however make a noise when on, but many people consider it rhythmic. Heat humidifiers are also featured on some CPAP machines.
CPAP can have multiple benefits. It most commonly can improve the quality of sleep. Also, is can correct the problem of snoring. And most importantly, it can prevent (or decrease) high blood pressure.
CPAP is most commonly used for cases dealing with sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a common disorder where not enough air reaches the lungs. In obstructive sleep apnea, snoring can be a side effect. This happens from the air that tries to squeeze past the blockage when you are trying to breath.
Pillar Procedure – The pillar procedure is a minor surgery. The purpose of this surgery is to treat mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea or to relieve habitual snoring. During the procedure, the surgeon will place small polyester rods in the soft palate. When the tissue around the rods heals, it strengthens the soft palate, thereby reducing the vibration of the tissue. This procedure is normally completed in the doctor's office with local anesthesia.
Tongue and Hyoid Suspension – This procedure (performed for patients with obstructive sleep apnea) secures the hyoid bone to the thyroid cartilage and helps to stabilize this region of airway. The hyoid bone is located in the neck that has attachments to the tongue, as well as other soft tissues and muscles around the throat. This bone is not attached in position, causing mobility and possible blockage during sleep. This surgery involves general anesthesia in an operating room. The surgeon will place four stiches around the hyoid bone and the upper portion of the thyroid cartilage to stabilize it. A drain will be placed to allow any fluid to escape without being trapped in the body.
Maxillomandibular Advancement Surgery – When other procedures have failed, Maxillomandibular Advancement Surgery can be performed. This surgery involves general anesthesia in an operating room. Hospitalization is usually required for 48 to 72 hours. Patients cannot return to work for a few weeks. Chewing should be avoided for four weeks. However, swallowing (and speech) is not affected by this procedure. The bite is normally preserved with plates and screws.
Start Yourself Over can help with ENT problems and direct you to any of our physicians to treat these disorders.