Laser Surgery For Snoring and Sleep Apnea:Laser Seotoplasty and Turbinectomy
Dr.K.O.Paulose FRCS DLO, Consultant ENT Surgeon, Jubilee Hospital, Trivandrum, Kerala, India.
Treatment to Improve Nasal Airway:
For people with narrow nasal passages, snoring can be alleviated with nasal devices or medications. If nasal mucosal swelling from allergies or irritation is causing the problem, nasal sprays may help. Nasal saline irrigation spray is a way to clean and moisturize the nasal lining since environmental irritants that stay in the nose (dust, pollen, and smoke) continue to irritate as long as they are present. The nasal lining also swells when it is cold and dry. Nasal saline helps to wash away irritants and moisturizes the mucosa without side effects . Other nasal sprays that may be used to improve nasal breathing include nasal steroid sprays. They are very helpful for swelling due to minor allergies or irritation. Steroid sprays decrease inflammation in the nasal passages. Very little of the steroid is absorbed into the body from the nose so there are few side effects with these sprays. Medicated sprays also can be used to improve snoring that results from nasal congestion.
Surgery to treat snoring is designed to reduce obstruction or narrowing in the anatomic area that is causing the snoring. Frequently, there is more than one involved area, so surgery on only one of the narrow areas may decrease snoring but not eliminate it entirely. Surgical treatment of snoring is generally focused on the nasal passages, palate and uvula, and tongue.
Nasal surgery for snoring:
Nasal surgery to treat snoring is generally focused on improving a narrow nasal passage. Laser can be used to shrink the turbinates by creating scar tissue in them, resulting in a more open nasal passage (LAPT).
Several other anatomic problems can cause or worsen snoring. The nasal septum is in the center of the nose that separates the right and left nasal passages. After trauma (including during birth), the septum can be deviated to one side or may curve to both side. The septum deviation can be corrected by removing the crooked cartilage-Septoplasty. It can be done in traditional method or with Laser.
Nasal polyps are usually caused by allergies. As they continue to enlarge over time, they can cause nasal obstruction. If the polyps are large enough, they will require surgery to remove them. It is easier to perform to perform the surgery in the operating room under general anesthesia. Removing the polyps reduces nasal obstruction, which may also improve snoring.