The hyoid bone is a boomerang-shaped floating bone that sits above the voice box. This bone is suspended by several muscles and it has an attachment to the epiglottis, the elastic cartilage that sits over our voice box to protect our airways when swallowing. Sometimes, collapse of the side walls of the throat and/or collapse of the epiglottis during inspiration causes Obstructive Sleep Apnea events.
Hyoid suspension procedures pull the hyoid bone up and forward by tethering the hyoid bone to the inner aspect of the mandible with sutures. By pulling the hyoid bone up and forward, it pulls the epiglottis forward as well as creates tension on the side wall of the throat, improving its patency during sleep.
This procedure is performed in approximately 90 minutes through a 5cm midline neck incision that is relatively camouflaged. Full recovery takes 6 weeks with return to work in about a week.
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