Importance of Research
In the words of Robert K Jackler, “it is the surgeon’s privilege to improve the lives of many, however we have the opportunity to impact thousands if not millions of lives through well designed clinical translational research targeting the correct questions.”
There is a critical need to shed light in many questions related to our field: from optimal patient selection, the need to identify clinically relevant outcomes which portray the goals of sleep surgery better than the surrogate but well studied apnea hypopnea index, designing better surgical tools and techniques, and most importantly, how to improve access to our expertise, for patients and trainees alike, allowing surgical care for OSA more equitable.
Current Research Projects
Based on preliminary discussions at the 2014 ISSS meeting in Detroit, two multicenter studies are being developed with the support of the ISSS. No ISSS financial resources will be used for the studies, but the meeting was an opportunity to discuss exciting new directions for research in the surgical evaluation and treatment of obstructive sleep apnea. Multicenter collaborations will enable the development of larger studies that are the key to answering many important research questions.
Drug-Induced Sleep Endoscopy and Surgical Outcomes
This is a retrospective cohort study of adults undergoing preoperative drug-induced sleep endoscopy (DISE) and pharyngeal surgery for the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea. The objective of the study is to examine the association between preoperative DISE findings and surgical outcomes, although the database will be available for additional studies to those who contribute patients. The principal investigator is Eric J. Kezirian, MD, MPH at the University of Southern California, and the study has already received funding from the American Sleep Medicine Foundation.
Prospective Study of Surgical Outcomes
This prospective study is based on a group discussion and consensus for a core set of patient evaluation and outcome measures in obstructive sleep apnea surgery. The principal investigator is M. Boyd Gillespie, MD, MS at the Medical University of South Carolina. Please contact Dr. Gillespie at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in becoming a study center.