Today snoring is widely analysed as a factor that may result in a decrease in the quality of life of the affected person and his or her family or close people. In most cases, snoring or cessation of breath during sleep is embarrassing not only to the snorer, but also to his or her bed partner, spouse, etc. who urge the affected person to seek help. There is a wealth of articles in the literature addressing risks to health and life that may be caused by snoring. A health-threatening obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) may be suspected if the affected person has restless sleep, excessive daytime sleepiness, difficult concentrating, overweight. Such a patient should be examined, his/her diagnosis should be confirmed and, where necessary, further treatment (surgical or non-surgical) should be administered. Snoring and OSAS is diagnosed and treated by an ENT doctor together with other medical professionals. When the OSAS is determined to patients with overweight, the first step towards recovery is weight normalisation. Then the patient helps not only himself/herself, but also opens more opportunities for therapeutic alternatives.
After an uvulopalatopharyngoplastic surgery the patients should avoid excessive physical load and follow a special diet for one week so that to avoid possible irritation of post-surgical wounds. Pharyngeal pains of medium intensity, which are frequently felt after the uvulopalatopharyngoplastic surgery for about one week, are effectively suppressed by analgesics. Results of the surgery can be seen after complete wound healing and disappearance of the palatal swelling.
Radiofrequency thermal ablation (RFA)
|Radiofrequency thermal ablation therapy involves puncturing|
|in the soft palate|
|or the root of the tongue using a needle electrode|
The mentioned areas are treated applying radiofrequency thermal energy. This produces a fibrous scar tissue which stiffens and reduces the volume of these anatomic areas. As the area behind the soft palate or the root of the tongue is increased, there is no airway obstruction and snoring or breathing pauses during sleep are stopped.
Patients may feel mild pains in the throat after the radiofrequency thermal ablation surgery, but the pain is completely controlled using analgesics. Results of the surgery can be seen after 6-8 weeks when the fibrous scar is fully composed in the areas of electrode punctures.