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What Are the Benefits of Having Radiofrequency Ablation of the Tongue?

Doctor examining patients throat in doctors office

Having sleep apnea can increase your risk of having serious health problems, including heart disease and stroke. This sleep disorder also lowers your quality of life overall. Traditional treatment for sleep apnea involves using a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine while you sleep, but this is not always a good option. When you need a different type of treatment, radiofrequency ablation of the tongue could be a more suitable option for you. Learn more about this procedure, so you can look into it for your sleep apnea.

What Is Radiofrequency Ablation of the Tongue?

This is an in-office procedure that helps shrink the muscles in your tongue, which provides your airway with more space to breathe. This helps prevent sleep apnea from occurring since your airway becomes more open.

Why Consider Radiofrequency Ablation of the Tongue?

You might consider this procedure if you are unable to use a CPAP machine and you prefer not undergoing invasive surgery to create more space in your airway. Radiofrequency ablation is a minimally invasive procedure that can provide you with notable results without the risks associated with more complicated procedures.

What Happens During This Procedure?

During this procedure, you’ll have an instrument set up at the back of your tongue. This instrument emits small amounts of energy that affect your tongue muscles. As these muscles heal, they naturally become smaller and tighter, which helps your airway become more open. This helps reduce your risk of having breathing pauses, snoring and other signs of sleep apnea. When you have this procedure done, local anesthesia is typically used, so you shouldn’t experience any discomfort.

Who Are Good Candidates?

This procedure is considered suitable for patients who have been diagnosed with sleep apnea. If you have this sleep disorder, you can undergo an evaluation to determine if this is a suitable treatment option for you.

What Are The Benefits?

Radiofrequency ablation of the tongue is a minimally invasive procedure, so you don’t have to worry about potentially serious complications, such as infections, nerve damage, and bleeding. You can have this procedure done in the office rather than at a hospital, and it usually takes less than 45 minutes overall. In addition to the ease and convenience of this procedure, successful results can also benefit you in a number of ways, such as lowering your risk of heart disease and other problems and improving your ability to concentrate. You can also expect to feel less sleepy during the day, which lowers your risk of having accidents on the road, at home or at work.

What Is The Recovery Process Like?

Since radiofrequency ablation of the tongue is an in-office procedure that only uses local anesthesia, you can typically drive home on your own afterward. Your doctor will provide you with instructions on what to avoid doing and what you should be doing as you heal, such as walking around to prevent blood clots from forming and elevating your head. You might experience mild pain for a few days after your procedure, and you might have slight nausea and ear or jaw pain. You will need to see your doctor for a follow-up visit a week or two after your procedure to ensure that your tongue is healing properly.

If you suffer from sleep apnea and would like to know more about radiofrequency ablation of the tongue, please contact eos sleep to schedule an appointment. We can help you determine if this procedure is suitable for you.

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