To examine the changes in measures of sleep apnea severity and hypoxemia on the first post-operative night (PON1) following expansion pharyngoplasty as a means to assess the safety of same day discharge after surgery.
Prospective cohort study of subjects with moderate-severe obstructive sleep apnea who underwent expansion pharyngoplasty at a single academic sleep surgical practice. A WatchPAT study was performed on the night immediately following surgery (PON1) and comparisons were made to baseline sleep testing.
Twenty subjects who had a mean age of 45.7 ± 10.8 years old and a mean body-mass index (BMI) of 31.4 ± 3.2 kg/m were enrolled. Patients had baseline severe OSA with mean apnea hypopnea index (AHI) 39.4 ± 19.5/h, O2 nadir 80.8 ± 6.1 % and time with oxygen saturation below 88 % (T88) 12.3 ± 13.2 min. Measures of sleep apnea and nocturnal hypoxemia were not significantly different on PON1. AHI was increased by >20 % in 11 (55.0 %) patients. One patient demonstrated a >10 % worsening in O2 nadir, and 8 patients (45.0 %) demonstrated a >20 % worsening in T88. BMI over 32 was associated with elevated odds of worsening in T88, and anesthesia involving ketamine was associated with lower odds of a 20 % worsening in AHI or T88.
On PON1 following expansion pharyngoplasty, AHI and nocturnal hypoxemia are stable overall but variable on an individual basis. The decision for admission should therefore be made on a case-by-case basis. Further research is need to elucidate definitive predictors of worsening measures on PON1.

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