Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Promising Results for Tongue Retaining Devices

A study in the Oct. 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine (JCSM) found that tongue retaining devices (TRD) performed similarly to mandibular advancement devices (MAD) in OSA patients.

TRD and MAD are two common types of oral devices used in dental sleep medicine.

A TRD holds the tongue in a forward position using suction. This suction keeps the tongue from collapsing during sleep and obstructing a person’s airway.

A MAD maintains the lower jaw in a protruded position during sleep. This protrusion maintains an open airway and pulls the tongue forward.

The JCSM study involved 84 patients who had mild, moderate or severe Apnea. Patients took one sleep test, or polysomnography (PSG), without a TRD and one sleep test wearing a TRD.

Both tests measured the patients’ Apnea-Hypopnea Index (AHI).

AHI is an average that represents the number of complete breaks in breathing (apneas) and partial breaks in breathing (hypopneas) that occur per hour of sleep.

In the study, an AHI of 10 to 15 indicated mild OSA. An AHI of 15 to 30 indicated moderate OSA. And an AHI of more than 30 indicated severe OSA.

Based on AHI, full or partial success was obtained in 71 percent of the cases. The mean AHI of the patients went from 38 to 14 with the TRD.

When OSA patients have a lower AHI, they breathe better and wake up fewer times during the night.

Photo courtesy of Lazard DS et al. The tongue-retaining device: efficacy and side effects in obstructive sleep apnea syndrome. J Clin Sleep Med 2009;5(5):431-438.


  1. I got information first time accurate of TRD. I got know detail of TRD. I am Toronto Dentist We are family dentist .

  2. Hi Dr. Haas - Good to hear from you. I hope you enjoy reading the blog!

  3. Thanks for sharing the findings from this study. Sleep apnea is a very serious disorder and as dentists, we need to be aware of devices used in dental sleep medicine.
    -Richmond Hill Dentist



The Official Blog of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine (AADSM) is intended as an information source only. Content of this blog should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment, and it is not a substitute for medical care, which should be provided by the appropriate health care professional. If you suspect you have a sleep-related breathing disorder, such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), you should consult your personal physician or visit an AASM-accredited sleep disorders center. The AADSM, and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, as the managing agent of the AADSM, assume no liability for the information contained on the Official Blog of the AADSM or for its use.