Obstructive sleep apnea affects around 20 million Americans and can lead to hypertension, heart attack, stroke, depression, muscle pain, fibromyalgia, morning headaches, and excessive daytime sleepiness.

Monday, April 4, 2011

New CPAP Alternative Publishes Positive Study Results

It looks like obstructive sleep apnea sufferers may soon have another option for sleep apnea treatment. The device, known as Provent, uses the body's own respiratory cycle to create the air pressure necessary to keep airways from closing during sleep.

Provent attempts to give patients the benefits of continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) without the noisy device and uncomfortable mask. The device is described as an expiratory positive airway pressure (EPAP) device because its vent system uses the body's expiratory motion to maintain pressure that keeps airways open. To use the system, patients put one disposable device in each nostril. These nostril devices are secured with hypoallergenic adhesives that create a seal on the nostril. They have vents that allow you to breathe in, but close when you breathe out, creating a positive pressure that helps the airways to stay open.

In the preliminary results from this study, which is being conducted at 19 centers across the country, researchers compared people using the device with those using sham devices. Within the first week, the 127 people being treated with the Provent device showed significant improvement while the 123 people using sham treatment did not. At three months, the people using the Ventus device saw a 42.7% decrease in their apnea-hypopnea index (AHI), a measure of a person's degree of oxygen deprivation during sleep. In addition, their Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) scores reduced from an average of 9.9 to 7.2. Perhaps most important for comparing the results for the device to CPAP, the median percentage of nights in which people used the device for the entire night was 88.2%.

It is nice to know that there may be another treatment option for people looking to treat their obstructive sleep apnea without CPAP. If you would like to learn more about the treatment options available for your sleep apnea, please contact a local sleep dentist today for more information.

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posted by Dr. Candelaria at 1:27 PM