About The Center
Overview of Sleep Apnea Surgery
Patient Experiences
Surgical Solutions For Adults
Surgical Solutions For Children
Research Publications
FAQ
Contact Us
Home
 

 


CONSULTATION

How do I begin the consultation process?

A consultation can be scheduled by contacting our office at (650) 322-8588. The initial consultation with Dr. Li includes a review of the patient’s sleep study results, as well as a physical examination with possible airway xrays (lateral cephalometric radiograph) and fiberoptic imaging of the airway. Surgical treatment options will be presented at the conclusion of the visit.

What if I live outside the Bay Area?

Dr. Li routinely treats patients from out of state or outside the U.S. The process usually begins via e-mail or phone before the initial consultation. Although it is possible to set up the consultation and operation during the same trip, it is preferable to have the patient take time to consider the recommendations by Dr. Li and have all questions answered before scheduling the operation for a later date.

How long do I need to stay in the Bay Area?

Typically, patients are discharged from the hospital within 1 to 3 days following sleep apnea surgery. Most patients stay in a local hotel for an additional 3 to 7 days before returning home. Although a follow-up appointment approximately 1 month afterward is recommended, it is not mandatory.

 

INSURANCE

Are the surgical procedures covered by medical insurance plans?

The procedures described in this website are routinely covered by major medical insurance plans (PPO plans). All procedures are submitted to insurance companies for approval prior to surgery

Does Dr. Li accept all medical insurance plans?

Dr. Li accepts all PPO medical insurance plans. However, Dr. Li does not belong to any insurance networks and the use of out-of-network benefits will be required.

 

SEPTOPLASTY

Is septoplasty a painful operation?

The pain associated with septoplasty is usually mild to moderate. The majority of patients do not need pain medication beyond the first or second day after surgery.

Is nasal packing needed after surgery?

The use of nasal packing is very uncomfortable and unnecessary. Dr. Li does not use nasal packing following septoplasty.

How long is the nose congested after septoplasty?

Nasal congestion can last 5 to 7 days after septoplasty.

How long do I need to take off work?

Most patients can return to work in 2 to 3 days after surgery.

 

TURBINATE REDUCTION

Is turbinate reduction a painful operation?

The pain associated with turbinate reduction is minimal. Pain medication is rarely necessary.

Is nasal packing used after the procedure?

Nasal packing is not needed after the procedure.

How long is the nose congested after turbinate reduction?

Nasal congestion can last 3 to 5 days after the procedure.

 

TONSILLECTOMY

How painful is the procedure?

In the past, tonsillectomy has been associated with significant pain. However, newer techniques and technology have reduced the morbidity associated with tonsillectomy. Most patients experience moderate pain after the operation and usually return to a normal diet within 10 to14 days.


PHARYNGOPLASTY

How painful is the procedure?

Pharyngoplasty is often combined with tonsillectomy. The most significant discomfort associated with the procedure is due to the tonsillectomy. In the past, the postoperative pain has been quite significant. However, newer techniques and technology have reduced the morbidity associated with tonsillectomy. The majority of patients experience moderate pain after the operation and usually return to a normal diet within 10 to 14 days.

Does pharyngoplasty affect swallowing or taste?

The tissue in the throat is very delicate and quite sensitive. Traditional uvulopalatopharyngoplasty involves removal of the uvula and a portion of the soft palate, which can affect swallowing. A modification of the procedure preserves the uvula and the improvement of the airway is achieved by suturing the wound to stent the airway open, thus reducing collapse. Since most of the tissue in the throat is preserved, adverse effects on swallowing and taste are very rare.

 

GENIOGLOSSUS ADVANCEMENT

Does the procedure affect speech or swallowing?

The genioglossus advancement procedure involves moving a small piece of the chin bone forward, which stretches a small portion of the tongue muscle forward.  Since the moving portion of the tongue is not altered, speech or swallowing are usually not affected.

Would the procedure result in changes in facial appearance?

The genioglussus advancement procedure results in an additional prominence of 2 to 3 millimeters on the chin. It is rarely noticeable.  However, if one palpates the chin, a small prominence is usually felt.

Would the procedure change the bite?

The genioglossus advancement procedure does not result in changes of the bite.  However, in approximately 10% of patients, there can be some degree of numbness of the lower front teeth, which can be permanent.

 

HYOID ADVANCEMENT

Does the procedure affect speech or swallowing?

The hyoid advancement procedure does not usually result in speech changes.  Some patients will have some altered swallowing after surgery, but this usually resolves within a few weeks.

Does the procedure result in an unsightly scar?

The length of the scar below the chin is usually 4 inches and sometimes can be placed at skin creases.  Although the scar is sometimes noticeable, it is usually not considered unsightly.

 

MAXILLOMANDIBULAR ADVANCEMENT

Click here to listen to Dr. Kasey Li explain this procedure.

Would the jaws be wired shut after the procedure?

The jaws are not wired shut. However, several rubber bands are used to keep the upper and lower teeth together, which limits the mouth opening. The mouth opening gradually increases over the ensuing few weeks as the number of rubber bands is reduced.

Does the procedure affect speech?

The maxillomandibular advancement procedure does affect speech in the beginning, since the jaw mobility is reduced due to the presence of swelling and the use of rubber bands. However, speech is not affected long-term. 

Does the procedure affect swallowing?

The maxillomandibular advancement procedure does affect swallowing in the beginning since the jaw mobility is reduced due to the presence of swelling and the use of rubber bands. Patients are restricted to a liquid diet for 3 to 4 weeks.  A soft diet, such as scrambled eggs, fish and pasta, can begin after 4 weeks.  The return to a normal and unrestricted diet may take up to 6 months.

Would the procedure result in changes in facial appearance?

The maxillomandibular advancement procedure does result in changes in facial appearance. Usually, the upper and lower jaws become more prominent since they are moved forward. Although facial appearance is changed, the majority of patients do not feel that it is a compromise in aesthetics; it is simply a little different.

Would the procedure change the bite?

The bite is usually maintained following maxillomandibular advancement.  Approximately 5% of patients may have some alteration of their bite, and some form of dental treatment such as orthodontic therapy or equilibration procedure may be required.



 

About the Center | Overview of Sleep Apnea Surgery | Patient Experiences | Surgical Solutions for Adults | Surgical Solutions for Children
Research Publications | FAQ | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Home