Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) in pediatric populations is often associated with congenital craniofacial malformations resulting in decreased pharyngeal airway, which in severe cases leads to tracheostomy dependence. The purpose of this study was to use distraction osteogenesis to improve the airway and decannulate the tracheostomy. This study involved 11 OSA tracheostomy-dependent patients (age range, 4 months to 6 years) who underwent bilateral distraction in the mandibular body using extraoral distraction devices. Following a latency period of 4 days, gradual distraction at a rate of 1 mm/d was performed followed by a consolidation period of 10 weeks. Three-dimensional computed tomography reconstruction of the face and neck before and after the mandibular lengthening aided in quantitative volumetric evaluation of mandibular volume and airway volume. The results demonstrated mandibular elongation of a mean of 30 mm on each side, an increase in mandibular volume by an average of 29.19%, and increase in pharyngeal airway by an average of 70.53%. Two to 3 months following the last lengthening, all 11 patients were decannulated with improvement of signs and symptoms of OSA and elimination of oxygen requirement. Mean follow-up was 2.0 years. The oxygen saturation level rose to more than 95%, and the apnea index respiratory disturbance index was less than 2 episodes per hour for all patients. Bilateral mandibular distraction is a useful method in younger children to decannulate permanent tracheostomy expanding the hypoplastic mandible and concomitantly advance the base of tongue and hyoid bone increasing the pharyngeal airway.
- Mandibular distraction osteogenesis
- obstructive sleep apnea