Modified uvulopalatopharyngoplasty and coblation channeling of the tongue for obstructive sleep apnea: a multi-centre Australian trial
Study Objectives To investigate the surgical outcomes and efficacy of modified uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (mod UPPP) and Coblation channelling of the tongue (CCT) as a treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Methods Adult patients with simple snoring or obstructive sleep apnea were treated with combined modified UPPP, bilateral tonsillectomy, and CCT (N = 48). Full polysomnography was performed preoperatively and 3 months postoperatively. Postoperative clinical assessment, sleep questionnaires, and patient demographics including body mass index were compared to preoperative data. All polysomnograms were re-scored to AASM recommended criteria by 2 sleep professionals. Results The preoperative AHI (median and interquartile range) of 23.1 (10.4 to 36.6) was lowered to a postoperative AHI of 5.6 (1.9 to 10.4) (p < 0.05). The Epworth Sleepiness Scale score fell from 10.5 (5.5 to 13.5) to 5.0 (3.09 to 9.5) (p < 0.05). Morbidity of the surgery was low, with no long-term complications recorded. Conclusions Modified UPPP combined with CCT is a highly efficacious intervention for OSA with minimal morbidity. It should be considered for individuals who fail or are intolerant of CPAP or other medical devices.