Snoring is due upper airway obstruction at nasal, nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal airway. Common causes are enlarged Tonsil and adenoid, elongated uvula and soft palate, enlargement of toungue.This is seen more in obese patient.
Some people snore more when they have nasal congestion and cannot breathe through their mouth .Likewise; people who have deviated nasal septum or blocked nasal passages from other causes are more likely to snore. Sleeping flat on the back or drinking alcoholic beverages close to bedtime also induces snoring. Such situations may induce sleep apneas as well. A thorough evaluation and sleep study (Polysomnogram) can determine whether the snoring is associated with apneas and, if so, the severity of the sleep apnea.
One common surgery for snoring is the laser-assisted uvulopalatoplasty or LAUP a modification of the uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, or UPPP procedure. It is also performed for obstructive sleep apnea. In the LAUP, the surgeon uses a CO2 laser to cut away the uvula, the tissue that hangs from the middle of the back of the roof of the mouth (from the Latin word “uva” meaning “grapes”), part of the soft palate and part of enlarged Tonsils.
Some times more than one session may be needed.
Nasal surgery to remove obstructions in the nose or to correct a deviated septum may also be done. These are likely to treat snoring successfully when there is significant blockage in the nose and nowhere else. Other surgeries for snoring include major ones such as that to advance the jaw, tracheotomy, reduction tougue-glossectomy.
Laser-assisted uvulopalatoplasty: a less expensive alternative to older UPPP is laser-assisted uvulopalatoplasty (LAUP), which uses laser techniques to shorten the uvula and vaporize parts of your palate. Whereas UPPP is performed under a general anesthetic, LAUP can be done under local anesthetic if the patient is cooperating and have no gag reflex.. LAUP is easier to do if you’ve already had your tonsils removed.
Effectiveness: Majority of patients (80-90%) report reduction of snoring and improvement from sleep apnea.
Revision surgery might be needed in 10% cases after a year or two.