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Revista de otorrinolaringología y cirugía de cabeza y cuello

On-line version ISSN 0718-4816


DIAZ S, Mario; SALAZAR C, Ana; BRAVO G, Felipe  and  OCAMPO-GARCES, Adrián. Treatment of obstructive sleep apnea syndrome with myofunctional oropharyngeal therapy: experience in public Hospital of Chile. Rev. Otorrinolaringol. Cir. Cabeza Cuello [online]. 2019, vol.79, n.4, pp.395-403. ISSN 0718-4816.


The obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSA) affects about 2%-4% of adults. CPAP is the first indication to treat moderate and severe cases, however the treatment is tolerated in only 50%-70% of patients. Therapy with myofunctional oropharyngeal (TMO) exercises helps to reduce upper airway collapsibility by strengthening the oropharyngeal musculature, and in the last decades had demonstrated good efficacy in variated groups of OSA patients.


To study TMO effectivity in OSA patients.

Material and method:

We reviewed retrospectively the clinical records of 12 (7 female) mild and moderate unselected OSA patients. Clinical and polysomnographic data were analyzed before and after TMO.


The mean age of patients was 65.0 ±9.0 years and median BMI was 26.7 kg/m2. TMO was associated to a significant reduction in median of Epworth somnolence scale (11.0 vs. 7.0), median apnea hypopnea index (13.4 vs 9.0 events/h), and decrease in cervical circumference. There was a tendency to improve quality of NREM sleep with increases in N3 stage and decrease in arousal index.


In a real clinical context, TMO reduced the severity of OSA in 41.6% in the studied patients. Because of its safety and low cost, TMO should be introduced as a therapeutic option in public sleep units in Chile.

Keywords : Obstructive sleep apnea; myofunctional oropharingeal therapy..

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