Korean J Otorhinolaryngol-Head Neck Surg.  2013 Jan;56(1):7-13. 10.3342/kjorl-hns.2013.56.1.7.

Contemporary Methods of Upper Airway Evaluation in Obstructive Sleep Apnea Patients

  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul, Korea. binent@hanmail.net


Obstructive sleep apnea is a manifestation of upper airway instability leading to upper airway collapse during sleep. Current diagnostic testing with polysomnography provides information regarding the number of apneas and hypopneas but does not provide any information regarding the level of pharyngeal narrowing or collapse. The identification of the site of obstruction is essential in choosing the appropriate treatment, especially when surgical intervention is considered. In this review we present contemporary methods for localizing obstructive sites with emphasis on two promising airway evaluation modalities. Sleep videofluoroscopy and sleep en-doscopy. Further understanding of the obstructive events occurring during sleep with precise evaluation of the sites of obstruction will eventually guide tailored surgical treatment with improved surgical outcomes.


Endoscopy; Obstructive sleep apnea; Snoring; Upper airway
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