Snoring results from turbulent, disordered flow of air during breathing. Importantly, this may occur in the nose, at the junction of the nose and throat or in the throat itself. Snoring can be disruptive to your own sleep, as well as that of loved ones (or even those trying to sleep down the hall!). At The Rontal Clinic, the evaluation begins with gaining a clear understanding of the location of the problem and its severity. Often nasal obstruction can be treated medically. However, some cases of nasal or partial pharyngeal obstruction require surgery. In many cases, weight loss can also be beneficial.
Most importantly we determine whether there is the presence of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. This occurs when the walls of the throat and the tongue fall together and obstruct breathing as the patient falls asleep. The patient awakens several times throughout the night, often without becoming aware of these disruptions. The result is a restless struggle to sleep, chronic fatigue, and sleepiness throughout the day. Worse, the disordered breathing eventually results in high blood pressure in the lungs, heart failure and abnormal heart rhythms, which can become life-threatening. Obviously, this is not an issue to be taken lightly.
In managing more complex snoring problems and sleep apnea where CPAP is not tolerated, we partner with a trusted colleague, Dr. Paul Hoff. Dr. Hoff was trained at the University of Michigan and has become a national leader in the techniques of diagnosis and minimally invasive and robotic surgical management.