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Technology Breakthroughs in Sleep Apnea (Technical Insights)

  • December 2013
  • -
  • Frost & Sullivan
  • -
  • 44 pages

Sedentary lifestyle and late work habits leading to increase in sleep disordered breathing

Scope of Research

Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder that is slowly increasing in people of all age demographics. Sedentary lifestyle and erratic work habits have increased the prevalence of sleep apnea. Sleep apnea can lead to various morbidities can eventually decrease longevity leading to premature death. New technologies and products are being developed to alleviate sleep apnea. However, considering that all age groups can be affected by sleep apnea, it is ripe time for all stakeholders to integrate their efforts and develop a standard platform to diagnose and treat sleep apneic patients. This short report will provide a brief insight into the sleep apnea industry, technology trends, drivers and challenges, its treatment modalities and analyst insights.

This research service will cover the following key sections in the sleep apnea industry:
- Technology Trends
- Drivers and Challenges
- Recent Developments
- Technology Roadmap and Analyst insights
- Patent Analysis

Research Methodology

- Step 1: To provide a thorough analysis of each topic, Technical Insights’ analysts perform a review of patents to become familiar with the major developers and commercial participants and their processes.
- Step 2: Building on the patent search, the analysts review abstracts to identify key scientific and technical papers that provide insights into key industry participants and the technical processes, on which they work.
- Step 3: The analysts then create a detailed questionnaire with content created to address the research objectives of the study, which functions as a guide during the interview process. While the analysts use structured questionnaires to guarantee coverage of all the desired issues, they also conduct interviews in a conversational style. This approach results in a more thorough exchange of views with the respondents, and offers greater insight into the relevant issues than more structured interviews may provide.
- Step 4: The analysts conduct primary research with key industry participants and technology developers to obtain the required content. Interviews are completed with sources located throughout the world, in universities, national laboratories, governmental and regulatory bodies, trade associations, and end-user companies, among other key organizations. Our analysts contact the major commercial participants to find out about the advantages and disadvantages of processes and the drivers and challenges behind technologies and applications. Our analysts talk to the principal developers, researchers, engineers, business developers, analysts, strategic planners, and marketing experts, among other professionals.
- Step 5: The project management and research team reviews and analyzes the research data that are gathered and adds its recommendations to the draft of the final study. Having conducted both published studies and custom proprietary research covering many types of new and emerging technology activities as well as worldwide industry analysis, the management and research team adds its perspective and experience to provide an accurate, timely analysis. The analysts then prepare written final research services for each project and sometimes present key findings in analyst briefings to clients.

Overview of Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea can be defined as a group of disorders characterized by abnormalities of breathing while sleeping. Breathing is interrupted from a few seconds to minutes, occurring several times over the course of a routine sleep. Airway blockage occurs as the patient sleeps. The blockage occurs between the soft palate and/or the back of the tongue and the pharynx. As the patient breathes, the reduced area in the upper airway can cause snoring, and more seriously, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). When breathing is obstructed, oxygen levels drop resulting in low supply to the heart and brain.

Daytime sleepiness
Slow reflexes
Poor Concentration
Increased risk of accidents

Adverse Effects
Heart Disease
High blood pressure
Weight Gain
Premature Death

Gold standard evaluation is overnight polysomnography

PSGs are conducted in sleep labs which are designed to evaluate, diagnose, treat and help patients to manage OSA. The patient has to spend the night in the sleep lab, with no sedatives. A sleep technician measures the nasal air flow of the patient through a nasal thermistor, in addition to a microphone for recording snoring and, sensors to the head, face, chest, abdomen and legs.

The PSG monitors brain waves, breathing, blood oxygen levels, heart rate, snoring and muscle activities such as leg movements and body position. The results of the PSG test are obtained within a day which defines and diagnoses sleep related issues. If the test is positive, then on the following day the patient sleeps with the CPAP machine, which prevents the air passage from choking. The air pressure at which the patient needs to sleep is detected by the titration machine.

Surgeries to reduce snoring

- Surgery to straighten the nasal septum, remove obstructions and enable better airflow.

Turbinate Surgery
- Enlarged interior turbinate is reduced either through radio frequency ablation or by sectioning.

- Removal of enlarged tonsils and adenoids that block the airway during sleep.

Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP or UP3)
- Tonsils, and parts of the uvula and soft palate are removed allowing more room for airflow.

Pillar Procedure
- Providing pillars into the soft palate for support, making the palate rigid.

Table Of Contents

Technology Breakthroughs in Sleep Apnea (Technical Insights)
Executive Summary
Technology Snapshot
Drivers and Challenges
Recent Developments
Technology Roadmap and Analyst Insights
Key Patents
Patent Analysis
Key Contacts
Decision Support Tables
The Frost and Sullivan Story

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