Does Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty Change the Airway Volume?

The risk of developing heart disorders and hypertension is enhanced by obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) syndrome. Successful care of OSA patients is therefore, important. The goal of this study was to investigate changes in the morphology and volume after uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) of the velopharyngeal and glossopharyngeal airway in three adult OSA patients who had bilateral broad tonsils using three-dimensional computed tomography. Case Report: All three patients with a history of extreme snoring and prolonged daytime sleepiness (one male and two female) were tested with overnight nocturnal polysomnography, suggesting mild to severe OSA. UPPP was supposed to widen the pharyngeal airway since all patients had large tonsils. Polysomnography and three-dimensional computed tomography (3D CT) scanning, both before and 3 months after UPPP, were performed and compared.
Results: Unexpectedly, although the morphology of the glossopharyngeal airway clearly changed after UPPP, the volume changes in the velopharyngeal and glossopharyngeal airways were negligible. In conclusion, in our patients, the morphology of the velopharyngeal and glossopharyngeal airway changed after UPPP; however, the volume did not change. Further analysis of 3D CT images could contribute to our understanding of changes in morphology and air volume in the upper airway that are caused by UPPP.

Author (s) Details

Dr. Yoichi Nishimura
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Teikyo University Chiba Medical Center, Chiba, Japan

Sarah D. Moral-Ramos
Center for Snoring and Sleep Disorders, The Medical City, Philippines.

Misato Nishimura
Department of Radiology, Second Hospital, Fujita Health University School of Medicine, Japan.

Mahmood A. Hamed
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Sohag University, Sohag, Egypt.

Wael A. Ahmed
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Sohag University, Sohag, Egypt.

Masatoshi Hirata
Department of Sleep Technology, Second Hospital, Fujita Health University School of Medicine, Japan.

Naoko Fujii
Department of Radiology, Second Hospital, Fujita Health University School of Medicine, Japan.


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