Passive constriction of the upper airway during central apneas: Fiberoptic and EMG investigations RESPIRATION PHYSIOLOGY Guilleminault, C., Hill, M. H., SIMMONS, F. B., Powell, N., Riley, R., Stoohs, R. 1997; 108 (1): 11-22


We studied five adult male patients with central sleep apnea syndrome (> 75% of the monitored events being central) during sleep using a fiberoptic scope and EMG monitoring of the superior and middle constrictors of the pharynx and the genioglossus and geniohyoid muscles. The fiberoptic investigation revealed a spontaneous decrease in the size of the airway during central apneas, without negative intrathoracic pressure or activation of the superior and middle pharyngeal constrictor muscles. We found a mean maximum decrease of 71 +/- 7% in the cross-sectional area of the airway and an absence of superior-middle pharyngeal constrictor EMG discharge. We did not observe any complete collapses of the airway.

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