2 Indications and current treatments
2.1 Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is characterised by repeated episodes of apnoea and hypopnoea during sleep, loud snoring and excessive daytime sleepiness. The main cause is collapse of the upper airway during sleep. OSA has a big impact on quality of life and increases the risk of having a stroke and developing conditions such as hypertension and atrial fibrillation.
2.2 OSA may be improved by lifestyle changes such as weight loss, avoiding alcohol or sedative medication, and change of sleeping position. The most common treatment for severe OSA is continuous positive airway pressure, applied through a face mask during sleep. Surgical interventions include tonsillectomy, adenoidectomy, uvulopalatopharyngoplasty and, rarely, tracheostomy and bariatric surgery.