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PUBLIC RELEASE DATE:
6-Oct-2009

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Contact: Matt Daigle
newsroom@entnet.org
703-535-3754
American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery

Oropharyngeal cancer patients experience post-surgery sleep apnea

New research released at world's largest ENT meeting

San Diego, CA - Nearly all patients who underwent surgery to treat oropharyngeal cancer experienced some degree of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), according to new research presented at the 2009 American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) Annual Meeting & OTO EXPO, in San Diego, CA.

The pilot study, which collected data from 22 patients treated for oropharyngeal cancer, found that among those who underwent primary surgery with free flap reconstruction, 93 percent had OSA as defined by a common measurement scale, with 67 percent defined as experiencing moderate or severe OSA (respiratory disturbance index greater than 15). Furthermore, 100 percent of those treated with radiation or chemotherapy (including some of the surgical group) developed OSA, although only one-third of these patients had moderate or severe OSA.

The authors intend to continue their research with a larger pre-post treatment cohort study. They believe OSA may play a significant role in treatment related fatigue in this patient population. They also contend that unrecognized OSA may lead to additional comorbidity in this patient population, and the diagnosis and treatment of sleep apnea postoperatively may improve quality of life for these patients.

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Title: Sleep Apnea Following Oropharyngeal Cancer Treatment
Author: Wei Qian, MD; Kevin Higgins, MD; Danny Enepekides, MD; Ian Poon, MD; Robert MacKenzie, MD; James Haight, MD, PhD
Date: Tuesday, October 6, 2009, 8:00-9:20 am

Information for the Media: The AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting & OTO EXPO Newsroom will be located in the San Diego Convention Center, Mezzanine Level, Room 14A. Hours of operation: Saturday, October 3, 12 pm to 5 pm; Sunday-Tuesday, October 4- 6, 7:30 am to 5 pm; and Wednesday, October 7, 7:30 am to 2 pm (all hours Pacific time). The newsroom serves as a work space for credentialed members of the news media. The newsroom is managed and staffed by the AAO-HNS Communications Unit. Please see the AAO-HNS website for media credentialing requirements for the event.

Onsite Newsroom contact: 1-619-525-6202

About the AAO-HNS

The American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery (http://www.entnet.org), one of the oldest medical associations in the nation, represents more than 12,000 physicians and allied health professionals who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the ears, nose, throat, and related structures of the head and neck. The Academy serves its members by facilitating the advancement of the science and art of medicine related to otolaryngology and by representing the specialty in governmental and socioeconomic issues. The organization's vision: "Empowering otolaryngologist-head and neck surgeons to deliver the best patient care."



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