Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty versus sequential uvulopalatoplasty for surgical treatment of snoring

Michael M. Gnuechtel, Gregory N. Postma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Military personnel serving on active duty suffering from loud, bothersome snoring often require surgical treatment. This elective treatment should not disrupt the command and should have minimal impact on military readiness. Major drawbacks of the standard procedure, uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, include postoperative pain requiring convalescent leave, postoperative bleeding, and velopharyngeal incompetence. In addition, the surgery consumes limited operating room time for what many consider elective surgery. Sequential uvulopalatoplasty was developed as an alternative. This is performed with a carbon dioxide laser under local anesthesia in a clinic setting, but it requires cumbersome laser precautions and expensive laser equipment. Standard electrocautery can be used instead of a laser for this procedure. This avoids additional expense, special precautions, and equipment but is equally safe and effective. We compare time lost from work, duration and level of pain experienced, number of days until regular diet resumed, and effectiveness between uvulopalatopharyngoplasty and sequential uvulopalatoplasty. We found sequential uvulopalatoplasty to have less impact on military readiness while being as effective as uvulopalatopharyngoplasty for snoring. This makes it an ideal treatment modality for patients desiring surgical correction of snoring.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)456-458
Number of pages3
JournalMilitary medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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