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Dr Michael Zacharia

Sleep Apnoea

Sleep Apnea

Have problematic snoring or been diagnosed with sleep apnoea?

Affecting one in four Australians, sleep apnoea is a serious medical condition that can impact your health and quality of life.

Occurring when the muscles of the upper airway relax to a point of collapse, obstructive sleep apnoea sufferers can experience hundreds of breathing interruptions per night.

What are the causes?

While sleep apnoea is largely found in men aged over 40, some of the factors that can contribute include:

  • Alcohol consumption
  • Smoking, and
  • Being overweight

Is it harmful?

Not only does sleep deprivation impact your daily activities, sleep apnoea can place extreme stress on your heart. When the airways are blocked during sleep, the brain briefly shocks the cardiovascular system into waking up. A 2007 study suggests that treating sleep apnoea early may decrease your risk of suffering a cardiovascular event by as much as 64%*.

How are patients treated?

As one of Australia’s leading plastic surgeons specialising in ear, nose and throat cases, Dr Zacharia will undertake a full upper airway assessment to determine the best procedures for each individual’s treatment.

When combined with a treatment plan to reduce the impact of lifestyle factors, many cases are resolved through nasal and soft palate surgery:
Septoplasty: This involves correcting the septum – the bone and cartilage that divide the nostrils
Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPP): This removes excess tissue from the soft palate and uvula, it may also involve the removal of present tonsils to create a larger airway

How complex is the procedure?

Sleep apnoea treatments are expertly conducted under general anaesthesia, with patients spending up to two days recovering in hospital.
Most patients will need to follow a liquid diet for most of their first week, post-operatively, before slowly reintroducing solid food groups.
Patients can return to regular duties within a few days of surgery, with all forms of strenuous activity avoided for the first four weeks.

For more information on treating your obstructive sleep apnoea, please contact us today.

Contact Dr Zacharia

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