Snoring relief can be obtained by a simple injection in the back of the mouth, which silence snorers and helps them as well as their families get a good night's sleep.
It seems the U.S, Army had a problem ... when their soldiers would sleep during covert operations ... they would snore so loud, it blew their cover, allowing the insurgents to locate them easily.
"The 'snoreplasty' procedure is simple, effective, relatively painless and the average cost per patient is only about $35," Scott Brietzke told delegates last week at a meeting of the American Academy of Otolaryngology's Head and Neck Surgery in Denver. The procedure involves injecting a chemical called tetradecyl sulphate into the fleshy soft palate at the back of the throat.
People begin snoring if these tissues flutter and come into contact with each other during sleep. These tissues can also cause sleep apnea by blocking the throat, making people wake up repeatedly. One common but drastic sleep apnea surgery solution is to cut away portions of the soft palate, says Andrew Cummin of London's Charing Cross Hospital.
Silent Night ... Holy Night
The tetradecyl sulphate works instead by destroying some of the tissues in the soft palate. This forms scar tissue, which stiffens the soft palate, reducing the amount of fluttering and hence snoring.
The technique, developed at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, can reduce snoring loudness from 11 decibels to two decibels. Which comes in handy if a soldier is trying to catch some well deserved rest in a foxhole or bunker.
Who needs fancy weapons of war, overhead drones .... simply listen for the snores.
Of the 27 patients treated so far, a quarter relapsed after a year or more as the scar tissue softened, but most were successfully retreated, says Brietzke.
"This certainly seems preferable to trimming the soft palate," says Cummin. "Trimming the palate can cause irreparable damage. If too much of the palate is removed, patients can experience regurgitation of fizzy drinks through their nostrils, or they can have trouble swallowing."