Medical and Surgical Treatments Available for Sleep Apnea Suffers
Few drug-based treatments of obstructive sleep apnea are known despite over two decades of research and tests. Oral administration of the methylxanthine theophylline (chemically similar to caffeine) can reduce the number of episodes of apnea, but can also produce side effects such as palpitations and insomnia. Theophylline is generally ineffective in adults with OSA, but is sometimes used to treat Central Sleep Apnea, and infants and children with apnea.
In earlier years, some neuroactive drugs, particularly a couple of the modern-generation antidepressants including mirtazapine, have been reported to reduce incidences of obstructive sleep apnea. As of 2020, these are not yet frequently prescribed for OSA sufferers.
When other treatments do not completely treat the OSA, drugs are sometimes prescribed to treat a patient’s daytime sleepiness or somnolence. These range from stimulants such as amphetamines to modern anti-narcoleptic medicines.
In some cases, weight loss will reduce the number and severity of apnea episodes, but for most patients that are overweight it is an aggravating factor rather than the cause of OSA. In the morbidly obese a major loss of weight, such as occurs after bariatric surgery, can sometimes cure the condition.
Many researchers believe that OSA is a neurological condition, in which nerves that control the tongue and soft palate fail to sufficiently stimulate those muscles, leading to over-relaxation and airway blockage.
A few experiments and trial studies have explored the use of pacemakers and similar devices, programmed to detect breathing effort and deliver gentle electrical stimulation to the muscles of the tongue. This is not a common mode of treatment for OSA patients, but it is an active field of research.
The Dream Team at Advanced Sleep Therapy
consists of a team of Respiratory Practitioners, as well as an RN Nurse Clinician who will assist you in starting out with the proper CPAP treatment equipment right in the comfort of your home and then provide ongoing monitoring to your Doctor. Advanced Sleep Therapy located in Arlington Heights has been serving Chicagoland for over fourteen years. Their knowledge and experience in CPAP machines, CPAP humidifiers, CPAP masks, CPAP headgear and all cleaning and CPAP accessories is outstanding, which is what makes them JCAHO Gold Seal Certified providers.
Don’t have insurance? No worries, you can always order online from our sister company Breathe Easy CPAP. Breathe Easy CPAP is proud to offer a complete line of CPAP machines, CPAP humidifiers, CPAP masks, CPAP headgear and all cleaning and CPAP accessories.