Recent studies have shown that neuromuscular stimulation of the genioglossus muscle and direct stimulation of the hypoglossal nerve can be performed selectively and safely. Such stimulation, delivered below the arousal threshold, can modulate airflow during sleep in patients with OSA. The feasibility and potential of upper airway stimulation for the treatment of OSA have been demonstrated. Further studies and stimulation-system refinements are presently underway, with hopes of establishing upper airway stimulation as a therapeutic option for this challenging disorder.
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