Maxillomandibular advancement surgery in a site-specific treatment approach for obstructive sleep apnea in 50 consecutive patients

Chest. 1999 Dec;116(6):1519-29. doi: 10.1378/chest.116.6.1519.


Objective: To report the efficacy of maxillomandibular advancement (MMA) surgery, with a description of several innovations, as a site-specific treatment of obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) in selected cases with disproportionate velo-orohypopharyngeal anatomy.

Design: Clinical series of 50 consecutive cases.

Setting: Surgery was performed in a hospital operating room, and perioperative management was provided in an intensive care environment. Except for polysomnography (PSG), which was performed and interpreted by independent sleep facilities/physicians, all pre- and postoperative evaluations were accomplished in a solo office private practice setting.

Patients: Patients were referred for MMA evaluation when applicable conservative therapies such as nasal continuous positive airway pressure (nCPAP) were not tolerated, refused, or unsuccessful. Case selection was based primarily on the sites of disproportionate upper airway anatomy.

Interventions: MMA consisted of a Lefort I osteotomy, bilateral sagittal split ramus osteotomies, and a new modified procedure called an anterior inferior mandibular osteotomy with indirect hyoid suspension. Some patients also received concomitant adjunctive nonpharyngeal procedures.

Measurements and results: Obtained at a mean of 5.2 months postoperatively, revealed significant improvement in all cases. Mean BPs (n = 50) were lowered, subjective symptoms were ameliorated, and mean body mass index (n = 50) was reduced. Cephalometric analysis (n = 50), with several new modifications including standardization for phases of respiration, quantified structural changes in soft-tissue and bony landmarks. Postoperative PSG results (n = 50) showed dramatic improvement over preoperative data (n = 50), with therapeutic values similar to nCPAP (n = 42). Mean values improved from preoperative to postoperative vs nCPAP for apnea index (34.5 to 1.0 vs 2.0, respectively), apnea-hypopnea index (59.2 to 4.7 vs 5.4, respectively), lowest arterial oxyhemoglobin desaturations (72.7% to 88.6% vs 88.6%, respectively), and number of desaturations < 90% (118.8 to 6.6 vs 2.4, respectively). The success rate was 100%.

Conclusion: MMA is highly successful and safe and may be a definitive primary single-staged surgical treatment of selected OSAS cases with diffusely complex or multiple sites of disproportionate velo-orohypopharyngeal anatomy.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cephalometry
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mandibular Advancement / instrumentation*
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteotomy
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes / complications
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes / surgery*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Velopharyngeal Insufficiency / complications