Can this Aussie invention cure snoring?
Oventus USA launch event: CSIRO Global’s General Manager Nigel Warren; Oventus VP Marketing, Sales and Commercialisation, Elise Hogan; Dr Amanda Cheng; Dr Chris Hart, Dr Michael Sodeifi
January 2017: An Australian invention changing the way sleep disorders are treated was launched in the United States on Saturday January 21.
San Francisco and the Bay area is the first region in the U.S. to offer patients the O2Vent™ T, a ground breaking oral appliance that’s changing the lives of people who snore.
Developed by Brisbane-based medical device company Oventus Medical, the unique device was unveiled during Australian Innovation Week at “PIVOTAL”, a tech start up entrepreneurial space.
A collaboration with Australia’s peak scientific body, the CSIRO, has seen Oventus take its revolutionary technology global, offering real hope to the estimated 12-18 million U.S. sufferers of Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA).¹
CSIRO Global’s General Manager Nigel Warren said Australian innovations include the discovery of penicillin and Wi-Fi.
“It’s exciting to see the successful collaboration between Oventus and CSIRO lead to another unique product that’s now impacting health and wellbeing on a global scale,” he said.
The O2Vent™ T was born out of Oventus founder and director Dr Chris Hart’s own experience and his desperation for a good night’s sleep. A “chainsaw snorer” and sleep apnoeic who also suffered nasal congestion, he fashioned the prototype of what would become the O2Vent™ Mono.
His invention is now going global as the incidence of OSA and its associated myriad of health problems continues to grow.
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon Dr Michael Sodeifi is one of those sufferers. He’s among the first clinicians in San Francisco treating patients with this life-changing device.
“Its discovery has been of tremendous value to me personally,” he said.
Dr Sodeifi said Oventus provided a revolutionary approach to managing OSA in a minimally invasive manner.
“The rising epidemic of OSA and its consequences are under-diagnosed and marginally managed at best,” he said. “It has huge impacts on society by adversely affecting our physical and mental health, personal relationships and job performance.
“As both a surgeon trained to treat this condition and a sufferer, I am very excited to be working with Oventus to introduce this device to other patients in the United States.”
Dr. Amanda Y. Cheng is a specialist in orthodontics and craniofacial orthopedics, having treated more than a thousand patients.
Dr Cheng describes the O2Vent™ T as one of the most effective mandibular advancement devices in reducing sleep apnoea.
“There has been an exceptional response from patients who love their Oventus device and use it every night while their CPAP is tucked away,” she said.
“I think this device will tremendously improve the health of Americans since 1 in 5 have sleep apnoea.”
The O2Vent™ T works by stabilising the jaw position, bringing the tongue forward to reduce airway collapse. It is printed in 3D and individually made of titanium to suit each individual user.
Dr Hart said the device’s patented airway design allowed for breathing through it, by bypassing multiple sites of obstruction including the nose, soft palate and tongue.
It’s the only one of its kind with the built-in airway that essentially acts as a second nose.
“Allowing patients to breathe through a separate airway is something that’s never been done before,” Dr Hart said.
The O2Vent™ T has been rolled out to five beta sites in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Boston, Kansas and Delaware.
Clinical partners in San Francisco have already successfully delivered the O2Vent™ T device to the first group of patients.
A 2016 clinical study showed Oventus’ first generation product, the O2Vent™ Mono, either eliminated or significantly reduced snoring in 100 per cent of patients. ² A second clinical trial is currently under way to add to the growing body of evidence as the device is rolled out worldwide.
¹ http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/news/spotlight/fact-sheet/sleep-disorders-insufficient-sleep-improving-health-through-research; and Paper: Incidence of Sleep Disorders Reported by Patients at UTHSC College of Dentistry: A Two-Year Follow-Up and Proposed Educational Program Chris S. Ivanoff, DDS; Frank Pancratz, BS Journal of Dental Education Volume 79, Number 5 November 20, 2014.
²Hart C, Lavery D, Czyniewski S, Beer F. Effects of a Novel Mandibular Advancement Device on AHI and Snoring in Patients with Obstructive Sleep Apnea: A Pilot Study. Journal of Dental Sleep Medicine 2016; 3(3): 97.
Oventus is a Brisbane based medical device company that is commercialising a suite of oral appliances for the treatment of sleep apnoea and snoring. Unlike other oral appliances, the Oventus devices have a unique and patented airway within the device that delivers air to the back of the mouth whilst alleviating multiple sites of obstruction including the nose, soft palate and tongue. They are particularly designed for the many people that have nasal obstructions and consequently tend to mainly breathe through their mouth. While it may seem counterintuitive, the device actually prevents oral breathing. The O2Vent™ T is designed to allow nasal breathing when the nose is unobstructed, but when obstruction is present, breathing is supplemented via the airways in the appliance. According to a report published by the Sleep Health Foundation Australia, an estimated 1.5 million Australians suffer with sleep disorders and more than half of these suffer with obstructive sleep apnea.¹ Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) is the most definitive medical therapy for obstructive sleep apnoea, OSA, however many patients have difficulty tolerating CPAP². Oral appliances have emerged as an alternative to CPAP for obstructive sleep apnoea treatment.³
¹Deloitte Access Economics. Reawakening Australia: the economic cost of sleep disorders in Australia, 2010. Canberra, Australia.
² Beecroft, et al. Oral continuous positive airway pressure for sleep apnea; effectiveness, patient preference, and adherence. Chest 124:2200–2208, 2003
³ Sutherland et al. Oral appliance treatment for obstructive sleep apnea: An updated Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. February 2014.