Reducing vibration that causes snoring with surgical implants

For people who have mild obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) or whose snoring is disrupting sleep, intimacy, and quality of life, the pillar procedure provides a noninvasive, surgical alternative to other sleep solutions such as continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) and tongue advancement and tongue base reduction.

The procedure involves implantation of three tiny polyester rods in the soft palate at the back of the roof of the mouth. As the tissue heals around the rods, the rods help “stiffen” the soft palate, therefore minimizing relaxation of the palate, which in turn reduces vibration that causes snoring, gasping, and other symptoms of OSA.

Minor surgical procedure with minimal side effects and recovery time

The pillar procedure is a minor surgery that does not involve cutting away of tissue or bone, and does not require use of lasers, chemicals or radiofrequency energy. The procedure is done with local anesthesia (numbing of the area) and takes about 20 minutes to perform.

Some patients notice improvement in snoring in just a few weeks while others may take a few months as the area around the inserts continues to heal. Pillar procedure is a long-term solution with lasting results. It is generally not recommended for people with severe OSA or people who are very overweight or obese.

If you or someone you know has problems associated with snoring or mild OSA, pillar procedure may be an option.

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Main Line Health, call 1.866.CALL.MLH (1.866.225.5654) or use our secure online appointment request form.