Transoral robotic tongue base resection in obstructive sleep apnoea-hypopnoea syndrome: A preliminary report

Claudio Vicini, Iacopo Dallan, Pietro Canzi, Sabrina Frassineti, Maria Grazia La Pietra, Filippo Montevecchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose of the Study:To evaluate the feasibility, tolerability and efficacy of tongue base management by means of transoral robotic surgery (TORS) in patients suffering from the obstructive sleep apnoea-hypopnoea syndrome (OSAHS) primarily related to hypertrophy of the tongue base. Procedure:Seventeen patients with OSAHS principally related to tongue base hypertrophy were managed by means of TORS (Intuitive da Vinci®). Patients with a minimum follow-up of 3 months were evaluated. Results: Ten patients [mean preoperative apnoea-hypopnoea index (AHI): 38.3 ± 23.5 SD] were included in the study. By means of robotic technology, the tongue base and the epiglottis could be managed. The postoperative polysomnographic results were fairly good (mean postoperative AHI: 20.6 ± 17.3 SD), and the functional results (pain, swallowing and quality of life) are very encouraging; altogether, complications were rare and of minor importance. Conclusions: Transoral robotic tongue base management in patients with OSAHS primarily related to tongue base hypertrophy is feasible and well tolerable. These preliminary results are encouraging and worthy of further evaluation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-27
Number of pages6
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - May 2010


  • Obstructive sleep apnoea-hypopnoea syndrome
  • Robotic surgery, transoral
  • Sleep apnoea
  • Tongue base

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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