Innovative Sleep Surgery to Treat Apnea

 Ryan S. Jackson, MD

In order to provide the best patient care possible, Assistant Professor Dr. Ryan S. Jackson is known to embrace innovation. For example, he is one of the top 10 busiest otolaryngology surgeons in the country using the da Vinci robotic system that facilitates complex surgery using a minimally invasive approach.

Dr. Jackson is now embracing another form of innovation for his patients. He is offering the Inspire Sleep Treatment, a breakthrough sleep apnea treatment that helps patients who can’t tolerate CPAP, the machine that is designed to help sleep apnea patients breathe at night. The CPAP requires that the patient wear a mask connected to a machine that uses forced air to keep breathing airways open. Unfortunately, the CPAP machine can be disruptive to both sleep tolerance and spousal relationships.

 The implanted Inspire system ensures multilevel airway patency during sleep.

With the Inspire treatment, a small device is implanted during an outpatient procedure. Then, each night before going to sleep, the patient turns it on with a remote. During sleep the muscles and soft tissues of the throat may relax, blocking the airway, but the Inspire treatment delivers mild stimulation to key muscles throughout the night to keep the airway passage open.

“I am offering this Inspire therapy to have a positive impact on the lives of patients with OSA (obstructive sleep apnea) in St. Louis,” said Dr. Jackson. “Many advances have been made in sleep surgery, including the hypoglossal nerve stimulator in the Inspire Sleep Treatment. I have had good experience with this device from training as we participated in the original trial published in The New England Journal of Medicine.”