ImThera logoObstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a general sleep apnea caused by blockage of the airway. It may be described by gaps in breathing during sleep. More than about 800,000 patients in the US are said to be diagnosed with OSA yearly.

ImThera Medical, Inc has declared that it has apparently finished the development of its Targeted Hypoglossal Neurostimulation (THN) system for Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). While Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) remains as the recognized therapy, studies illustrate that up to about 50% of patients apparently do not abide by CPAP.

ImThera Medical’s technology and THN Sleep Therapy was supposedly developed as a surgical alternative for patients who could not or may not abide by CPAP. ImThera Medical’s THN Sleep Therapy may transmit neurostimulation to the hypoglossal nerve to supposedly regulate particular muscles of the tongue. By means of a multi contact electrode and a programmable implantable pulse generator (IPG), the system may carry muscle tone to key tongue muscles to apparently thwart the tongue from falling abruptly into the upper airway.

Marcelo G. Lima, Chairman, President and CEO of ImThera Medical, commented, “OSA is a serious health issue worldwide. With numerous OSA patients still lacking an effective treatment, other methods such as surgical therapies that specifically target the tongue are evolving and may become very compelling. Our new THN sleep therapy system will offer OSA patients an alternative to CPAP, allowing them to regain their quality of sleep. We are looking forward to performing the required safety and efficacy tests for our innovative technology in the months ahead.”

This technology may comprise of a minute multi-current source IPG, apparently working in nonstop, open loop mode, carrying targeted stimulation. The method may be intended to augment airway flow. This may allow normal and peaceful sleep for OSA patients.

ImThera’s device is apparently not available for sale in the United States of America.