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Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol. 2008 May;265(5):581-6. Epub 2007 Oct 19.

Quantitative analysis of uvular muscles in cases of simple snoring and obstructive sleep apnea: an image analysis study.

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Department of Otolaryngology, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.


Studies on the histopathological changes of the palatine muscles in cases of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and simple snoring are controversial, while some authors confirm the presence of muscle hypertrophy and increase in total muscle bulk (obstructive theory), others deny this confirming the presence of muscle atrophy and decrease in the muscle bulk (neurogenic theory), but all these studies depended on subjective observer dependent methods to calculate the muscle bulk. We are carrying a unique study to calculate the muscle bulk in uvular specimens in ten cases of OSA comparing it to ten cases with simple snoring and controls using digital computer dependent software (image analysis). Cases of OSA are associated with definite increase in the total muscle bulk of the palatine muscles when compared to cases of simple snoring and controls. Uvular muscular hypertrophy and the obstructive theory seem to explain the pathophysiology of OSA.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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