54 year old male had been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea 10 years ago. He had been advised that he had moderate sleep apnea and should start using CPAP. He tried the CPAP for about 2 months and had several fittings to try to make it more comfortable to use. However, whenever he used it he found that the pressure from the CPAP was too much to tolerate and simply stopped using it.
His family finally convinced him to seek another option for treatment due to his snoring and their concerns for his overall health. He had been gaining excessive weight and recently had been diagnosed with high blood pressure and early diabetes. He visited with 2 or 3 doctors who all recommended that he get back on CPAP because the newer devices were easier to use. He tried CPAP again for several weeks but still had the same problems as before so stopped using it.
On the advice of a friend he visited with an ENT who examined the inside of his nose and found that he had a deviated septum and enlarged nasal turbinates. The ENT also found that while the patient had a large tongue and droopy palate the anatomy was not that bad to justify surgery in those areas. An oral airway appliance could easily be used to help the droopy palate and tongue falling back during sleep without having to go through a painful surgery. Decision was made to proceed with nasal airway surgery (septoplasty and turbinoplasty) and to have a custom oral airway appliance designed and fitted by a sleep medicine trained dentist.
6 months after his surgery the patient reported that he was sleeping much better and that his family was reporting that his snoring had improved. A follow up sleep study showed that his testing results were now normal with slight and occasional snoring. His blood pressure had begun to improve and since he had more energy now he had returned to regular exercise and was losing weight which would help his early diabetes. Overall his quality of life and long term health were greatly improved.