Cutting-Edge CareThe Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin's Sleep Disorders Program leads the field in innovative treatments for sleep disorders:
- First in the world to use coblation (noninvasive radiofrequency energy) to treat (shrink) lingual tonsils for sleep apnea.
- First in the nation to treat obstructive sleep apnea with a tongue suspension suture, a simple procedure that helps keep the tongue base from collapsing during sleep.
- First in the nation to treat sleep apnea using a technique to lengthen the jaw bone.
- First in the region to treat airway obstruction using the Restore™ implant — small polyester inserts that stiffen the soft palate.
Research and Clinical TrialsThe physicians of the Sleep Disorders Program are actively involved in research projects and clinical trials. Much of their research aims at gaining a better understanding of the link between sleep and health. The program is also a leader in investigating new surgical techniques and devices for treating sleep apnea. For patients, this focus on research often means access to the most advanced treatments available.
Upper Airway LaboratoryThe Upper Airway Laboratory is a funded research project that helps physicians plan surgery for patients with breathing disorders. Using topical medications and a ventilator, staff members create a “virtual sleep state” in the patient’s airway and then scan it with an MRI. The three-dimensional MRI model helps the care team plan the right reconstructive approach for the patient. The Upper Airway Laboratory is the only project of its kind in the United States.
Fellowship-TrainedA fellowship is additional training in a specialty field beyond a physician’s residency training.
and Board-Certified Physicians
A board-certified physician has successfully completed an approved education and training program and a rigorous evaluation process to assess his or her knowledge, skills and experience to provide quality patient care in a particular specialty.
Psychological EvaluationPeople experiencing insomnia often have learned behaviors and thought patterns that prevent them from falling or staying asleep. Difficulty with falling asleep can lead to anxiety and expectations that sleep will continue to be difficult. The anxiety, in turn, can further impede sleep.
After meeting with a sleep specialist, some patients may be referred to the Sleep Disorders Program team psychologist for an evaluation. Referrals are often made when insomnia is the primary complaint. The insomnia may be related to other disorders that affect sleep such as restless legs syndrome, periodic limb movement disorder, sleep apnea or other disorders. People often develop ways to cope with their sleep problem(s) that may, in fact, make their problem worse. Through an individual evaluation, the psychologist can determine the behaviors that may hinder sleep and recommend behavior changes.
Date: Apr. 2, 2012
Online Editor(s): Richard Petre