Snoring and Sleep Apnea Treatment (Pillar Procedure)

An effective, first-line treatment for sleep apnea and snoring

In addition to interrupted sleep and daytime fatigue, sleep apnea can lead to major health problems like heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke. Disruptive snoring also can contribute to conflict and stress for both sleep partners.

Now there's a simple, minimally invasive option for treating mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and disruptive snoring. The Pillar Procedure is:

  • Less invasive and less painful than other surgical procedures
  • Completed in a single, short office visit
  • FDA-cleared and clinically proven, with results comparable to more aggressive surgical procedures

Most patients soon report a noticeable, lasting reduction in sleep apnea and snoring. In long-term (one year) clinical studies, sleep apnea was reduced in nearly 80% of the patients; for patients suffering from disruptive snoring, bed partner satisfaction was as high as 90%. Patients also experienced less daytime sleepiness.

PillarHow the Pillar Procedure works

The Pillar Procedure addresses one of the anatomical components of sleep apnea and snoring: the soft palate. During the Pillar Procedure, three tiny woven inserts are placed in the soft palate to help reduce the vibration that causes snoring and the ability of the soft palate to obstruct the airway. Once in place, the inserts add structural support to the soft palate. Over time, the body's natural tissue response to the inserts increases the structural integrity of the soft palate.

Pillar inserts are made of material used in implantable medical devices for more than 50 years. They are designed to be invisible and should not be felt or interfere with swallowing or speech. Many patients resume normal diet and activities the same day.

Frustrated with CPAP and other surgical options?

If you've been diagnosed with OSA, or are frustrated with CPAP treatment, ask your physician about the Pillar Procedure. Success with the Pillar Procedure can be influenced by tongue position, tonsil size, body mass and other factors. Your physician can give you more information and determine whether the Pillar Procedure is right for you.

Reprinted with permission of Medtronic, Inc. Copyright 2013 Medtronic, Inc. All rights reserved.