chapter  12
16 Pages

Oral Appliances

Peter A. Cistulli M. Ali Darendeliler

INTRODUCTION The last decade has seen the emergence of oral appliances in the clinical manage­ ment of snoring and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). This has been driven by the need for simple and effective treatment options for these highly prevalent disorders. The idea of using a dental prosthesis to reduce upper airway obstruction is not new. Pierre Robin (1) described such a concept in children with life-threatening upper airway obstruction related to micrognathia and glossoptosis, well before OSA was even recognized as a disorder. The use of oral appliances for the treatment of sleeprelated upper airway obstruction was first reported some 25 years ago (2,3)- A key milestone in the field was the systematic review conducted by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) a decade ago (4), highlighting the inadequacy of existing evidence at that time and the need for rigorous scientific evaluation. Whilst it has taken a relatively long time for the evidence base to reach a level that supports their use in clinical practice, that time has now arrived, and it is important for clinicians involved in the management of snoring and OSA to have a sound working knowledge about this treatment modality.