Selective upper airway stimulation in older patients

Publication date: July 2018
Source:Respiratory Medicine, Volume 140
Author(s): Zhaojun Zhu, Benedikt Hofauer, Markus Wirth, Katrin Hasselbacher, Helmut Frohnhofen, Clemens Heiser, Armin Steffen
ObjectiveSelective stimulation of the hypoglossal nerve has proven to be an effective therapy for patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). The aim of the study is to investigate the efficacy of selective upper airway stimulation (sUAS) in older adults.MethodsAll consecutive patients older than 64 years and who received an implant for sUAS were enrolled. As a control group, an equal number of patients younger than 65 years with matched apnea hypopnea index (AHI) and body-mass-index (BMI) were selected. Treatment outcome data were collected including daytime sleepiness as well as demographics with co-morbidities, BMI, adverse events and adherence to therapy.Results62 patients were included. Both the control and study group did not differ significantly for AHI, BMI, and Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) (28.7–28.4/h; 30.1 to 28.4 kg/m2; 14.6 to 12.0 points); but co-morbidities were significantly higher in the study group. Our data showed no significant difference between the outcomes of study and control group for AHI, Oxygen desaturation index (ODI) and ESS (6.0–6.0/h; 7.9 to 5.5/h; 5.0 to 7.0 points). Serious adverse events did not occur in both groups and surgical implantation time did not differ.ConclusionsUAS leads to significant reductions of AHI, ODI and ESS in older patients. Despite higher age and more co-morbidities, surgical implantation time was not affected. Older patients showed higher usage of sUAS. Advanced age seems not to be a limiting factor for treatment outcomes of sUAS, thus indication for this treatment can also be applied to older people.