Tag Archives: hypoglossal nerve

PUBLISHED: Hypoglossal Nerve Stimulator

Hypoglossal Nerve Stimulator
Russel Kahmke, MD1Adam Honeybrook, MBBS1Clayton Wyland2C. Scott Brown, MD1
1 Department of Head and Neck Surgery & Communication Sciences, Duke University Medical Center
2 Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a common condition with several effective treatment strategies centered around relieving airway obstruction. The gold standard for OSA treatment remains continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), but other options exist.

A recent therapy developed within the past decade utilizes hypoglossal nerve stimulation (HGNS) through a surgically implanted device. As the patient inspires, the device sends an electrical impulse similar to a cardiac pacemaker. The impulse activates targeted branches of the hypoglossal nerve, leading to stimulation of muscles that protrude the tongue and open the airway posteriorly. This mechanism has been shown to reduce airway obstruction by activating these muscles during inspiration.

Along with detailing the chronological order of events, this case outlines various complex anatomical structures that are identified in order to safely and effectively implant the hypoglossal nerve stimulator.

PREPRINT RELEASE: Hypoglossal Nerve Stimulator

Hypoglossal Nerve Stimulator
Duke University Medical Center

Russel Kahmke, MD
Assistant Professor of Surgery1
Adam Honeybrook, MBBS
Resident Physician1
C. Scott Brown, MD
Resident Physician1

1Division of Head and Neck Surgery & Communication Sciences

Dr. Russel Kahmke implants a hypoglossal nerve stimulator in a patient with obstructive sleep apnea. He is one of only several surgeons currently performing this procedure in North Carolina.