A trial of drug-induced sleep endoscopy in the surgical management of sleep-disordered breathing

Laryngoscope. 2013 Jan;123(1):277-82. doi: 10.1002/lary.23506. Epub 2012 Sep 5.


Objectives/hypothesis: To determine the reliability and validity of drug-induced sleep endoscopy (DISE) for patients undergoing surgery for sleep-disordered breathing (SDB).

Study design: Non-randomized, prospective clinical trial.

Methods: Patients with sleep-disordered breathing were evaluated for multi-level upper airway surgery by awake and drug-induced sleep endoscopy to identify levels and degree of airway collapse. The reliability of a drug-induced sleep endoscopy rating index was assessed by comparing scores of three blinded investigators. The validity was assessed by comparison of drug-induced sleep endoscopy index scores from awake and drug-induced sleep endoscopy; correlation between drug-induced sleep endoscopy scores and Apnea-Hypopnea Index; and determination whether drug-induced sleep endoscopy affected the original surgical plan.

Results: Thirty-eight patients (22 M, 16 F) underwent preoperative assessment with awake and drug-induced sleep endoscopy. Drug-induced sleep endoscopy was successfully performed in all but one patient (97%) who became combative during propofol infusion. Using an internal airway grading scale, drug-induced sleep endoscopy demonstrated more severity of collapse than awake endoscopy (P = 0.0001). The surgical plan was changed after drug-induced sleep endoscopy in 23 (62%) cases and unchanged in 14 (38%). The majority (73%) had multi-segmental airway collapse with fewer having single-level palatal (16%) or tongue base (11%) collapse. Scoring of drug-induced sleep endoscopy videos demonstrated good intrarater (κ 0.61) and interrater (κ 0.65) correlation.

Conclusions: Drug-induced sleep endoscopy provides more clinical information to assess airway function and collapse than awake endoscopy alone and assists in the surgical planning. Additional investigation is needed to standardize drug-induced sleep endoscopy techniques, training, and interpretation.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anesthetics, Intravenous / pharmacology*
  • Endoscopy / methods*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes / diagnosis*
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes / physiopathology
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes / surgery
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / diagnosis*
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / physiopathology
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / surgery
  • Young Adult


  • Anesthetics, Intravenous