Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a worldwide disease whose prevalence is increasing as obesity rates increase. The link between obesity and OSA is likely to be the deposition of fat in the tongue, compromising upper airway size. The role of obesity varies in different ethnic groups, with Chinese being particularly sensitive to increases in weight. OSA lends itself to a personalized approach to diagnosis and therapy. For example, different clinical OSA subtypes likely benefit from therapy in different ways. Hypoglossal nerve stimulation is a useful second-line therapy in patients who cannot tolerate continous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines or intraoral devices. Technological advances allow patients to participate in their own care, and doing so improves CPAP compliance. We are entering a future where we can focus efforts to predict and prevent OSA on an individual level.


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