Treatment Modalities of Infants With Upper Airway Obstruction—Review of the Literature and Presentation of Novel Orthopedic Appliances

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Objective:To present a new orthopedic method for treatment of infants with Pierre Robin sequence (PRS) and upper airway obstruction (UAO) as an alternative to other established nonsurgical and surgical techniques such as positioning, nasopharyngeal or endotracheal intubation, tongue-lip adhesion, extension, distraction, or tracheostomy.Design:Review of the literature and presentation of novel orthopedic appliances.Setting:Department of Orthodontics, Dental Clinic, Medical Faculty of the University of Wuerzburg, Germany, Department and Clinic of Pediatrics, Medical Faculty of the University of Wuerzburg, Germany, 2005 to 2008.Patients:Seven patients with significant respiratory and feeding difficulties between 0 and 6 months of age. Both patients with nonsyndromic PRS and patients with syndromic PRS were included.Interventions:The type of respiratory tract obstruction was defined by nasopharyngoscopy. Patients with type 1 obstruction received a plate with an epiglottic spur; whereas, patients with obstruction type 2, 3, or 4 received a plate with a pharyngeal tube.Results:All patients were successfully treated with orthopedic appliances alone. Under plate therapy they showed good oxygen saturation and could consequently be better nourished orally.Conclusions:The presented novel method is a noninvasive technique in treatment of infants with UAO.

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