To describe our experience treating retroglossal and base-of-tongue collapse in children and young adults with obstructive sleep apnea using combined genioglossus advancement (Repose THS; MedtronicENT, Jacksonville, Florida) and radiofrequency ablation of the tongue base.
Retrospective institutional review board–approved analysis of 31 operations.
Tertiary pediatric medical center.
Thirty-one patients with a mean age of 11.5 years (age range, 3.1-23.0 years).
Combined genioglossus advancement and radiofrequency ablation.
Main Outcome Measures
Preoperative and postoperative polysomnographic data were evaluated for each patient. Success of surgery was determined using the criteria of a postoperative apnea-hypopnea index of 5 or fewer events per hour, without evidence of hypoxemia (oxygen saturation as measured by pulse oximetry), and without prolonged hypercarbia (end-tidal carbon dioxide).
Thirty-one patients who underwent genioglossus advancement were analyzed. Nineteen (61%) had Down syndrome. The overall success rate was 61% (19 of 31) (58% [12 of 19] success among patients with Down syndrome and 66% [7 of 12] success among patients without Down syndrome). Overall, the mean apnea-hypopnea index improved from 14.1 to 6.4 events per hour (P < .001); the mean nadir oxygen saturation as measured by pulse oximetry during apnea improved from 87.4% to 90.9% (P = .07).
Pediatric obstructive sleep apnea refractory to adenotonsillectomy that is due to retroglossal and base-of-tongue collapse remains difficult to treat. However, most patients in this analysis benefited from combined genioglossus advancement and radiofrequency ablation.