Italian recommendations on dental support in the treatment of adult obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS)
L. Levrini, F. Sacchi, F. Milano, A. Polimeni, P. Cozza, E. Bernkopf, M. Segù
Background. The aim of the present article is to present a set of proposed clinical recommendations aimed at Italian dentists involved in the management of patients with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome or snoring.
Methods. With the purpose of creating a study group, some of the most important Italian scientific societies operating in fields relevant to the issue of sleep medicine in dentistry were asked to appoint a representative. Each member of the study group was required to answer questions regarding the clinical management of OSAS and snoring.
Results. Oral appliances can be used to treat: - simple snoring, in patients who do not respond to, or do not appear to be suitable candidates for behavioral measures such as weight loss or positional therapy; - mild or moderate OSAS, in patients who prefer OAs to continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) or who are not suitable candidates for CPAP, because of its failure or failure of behavioral approaches like weight loss or positional therapy; - severe OSAS, in patients who do not respond to or do not tolerate CPAP and in whom no indication for either maxillofacial or ENT surgery appears applicable.
Conclusions. The application of oral appliances is highly desirable in cases of simple snoring or mild to moderate OSAS, whereas considerable caution is warranted when treating severe OSAS. It is fundamental to ensure that the patient understands his problem and, at the same time, to present all the various treatment options.