Glossary of Sleep-related terms

Genioglossus tongue advancement

Surgical treatment sometimes used for sleep apnea or snoring. This is designed to improve the airway behind the base of the tongue. The genioglossus, which is the main tongue muscle, relaxes during sleep, often allowing the tongue to fall into the airway. This muscle attaches to the middle of the lower jaw. If a segment of bone containing this muscle is pulled forward and stabilized, it can open the airway space behind the tongue. This procedure does not move the teeth or jaw. It is performed under local intravenous sedation or general anesthesia and requires a one or two day hospital stay.1