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Zahnheilkunde 20. September 2013

Management of obstructive sleep apnea with a palatal lift prosthesis

Background: This case report is presented to demonstrate the effects of a palatal lift prosthesis for the management of mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea.

Materials and methods: A patient suffering from obstructive sleep apnea (apnea hypopnea index= 20.3) was fitted with a palatal lift prosthesis. The patient’s chief concern was snoring and excessive daytime sleepiness which was successfully rehabilitated using a palatal lift appliance. Changes in the upper airway dimensions were measured by taking lateral cephalograms before placement of the prosthesis and 6 weeks after treatment.

Results: Before placement of the appliance the Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) score of the patient was 19 which was slightly above the borderline and 1 month after placement the ESS score was reduced to 9, i.e. within normal limits.

Conclusions: This treatment option significantly improved the upper airway passage dimensions and thus eliminated snoring and airway obstruction and also improved the overall quality of life of the patient.

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