European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology

, Volume 275, Issue 12, pp 2983–2990 | Cite as

The aging effect on upper airways collapse of patients with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome

  • Claudio Vicini
  • Andrea De Vito
  • Giannicola IannellaEmail author
  • Riccardo Gobbi
  • Ruggero Massimo Corso
  • Filippo Montevecchi
  • Antonella Polimeni
  • Marco De Vincentiis
  • Giuseppe Meccariello
  • Giovanni D’agostino
  • Giovanni Cammaroto
  • Francesco Stomeo
  • Giuseppe Magliulo



To evaluate, using drug-induced sleep endoscopy (DISE), sites of upper airway obstruction and pattern of collapse in patients over 65 years old affected by obstructive sleep apnea. To compare sites and pattern of collapse of elderly patients with a group of patients younger than 65 years.


A group of 55 patients aged over 65 years were enrolled in this prospective study. Fifty patients under 65 years old were collected in the control group. Polysomnographic data and clinical parameters such as the daytime sleepiness, and body mass index were evaluated for both groups of patients. All patients underwent DISE examination with VOTE classification.


The AHI value increased with aging whereas elderly patients presented a reduction in daytime sleepiness. Elderly patients showed a higher incidence of total collapse in the velum region compared to younger patients (90.9% vs 70%;); the older patients showed a lower degree of total oropharyngeal lateral wall collapse with respect to younger patients, (20% vs 50%). No difference in tongue base collapse emerged between the two subgroups of patients.


Elderly patients showed a higher incidence of total collapse in the velum and a lower incidence in the oropharyngeal lateral wall compared to younger patients.


Obstructive sleep apnea OSAS Sleep endoscopy DISE Elderly 




Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional committee of the Morgagni Pierantoni Hospital and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Claudio Vicini
    • 1
    • 2
  • Andrea De Vito
    • 1
  • Giannicola Iannella
    • 3
    Email author
  • Riccardo Gobbi
    • 1
  • Ruggero Massimo Corso
    • 4
  • Filippo Montevecchi
    • 1
  • Antonella Polimeni
    • 5
  • Marco De Vincentiis
    • 3
  • Giuseppe Meccariello
    • 1
  • Giovanni D’agostino
    • 1
  • Giovanni Cammaroto
    • 1
  • Francesco Stomeo
    • 2
  • Giuseppe Magliulo
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Head-Neck Surgery, Otolaryngology, Head-Neck and Oral Surgery UnitMorgagni Pierantoni HospitalForlìItaly
  2. 2.Department ENT and AudiologyUniversity of FerraraFerraraItaly
  3. 3.Department of ‘Organi di Senso’University “Sapienza”RomeItaly
  4. 4.Intensive Care UnitMorgagni-Pierantoni HospitalForlìItaly
  5. 5.Department of Oral and Maxillo Facial SciencesUniversity “Sapienza”RomeItaly

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