Presented at Respiratory Drug Delivery 2010, Orlando, Florida April, 2010
Authors: Kurt Nikander, Ian Petherbridge, Eugene Scargerry, dirk Von
Hollen, John Viviano, Henry Chrystyn
Summary: “Maximal lung deposition of inhaled aerosols is important in the treatment of respiratory diseases. The upper airways are known to affect the deposition of aerosol in the lungs. The design of inhalers and of inhaler mouthpieces (change in vertical diameter) has been shown to affect lung and upper airway deposition of inhaled aerosol. Acoustic pharyngometry (Eccovision; Sleep Group solutions; North Miami Beach, FL) can be used to non-invasively measure the upper airway cross-s3ectional area. Acoustic pharyngometry has traditionally been used to evaluate the impact
of various protrusive positions of the lower jaw (in mm increments) achieved through oral appliances for patients with sleep apnea. A recently published validation study of acoustic pharyngometry suggested that seated pharyngometry measurements correlated with supine MRI measurements. We have measured through acoustic pharyngometry the impact of prototype stepped mouthpieces on the dimensions of the upper airways. The stepped mouthpiece design provided the tools for both vertical and horizontal movements (mandibular advancements) of the lower jaw.
Conclusion: “Mandibular advancements through the use of stepped mouthpieces were shown to increase the volume of the upper airways. The use of acoustic pharyngometry enabled a detailed
analysis of the changes from the oral cavity to the glottis. The incorporation of stepped mouthpieces in inhalers might increase the amount of aerosol deposited in the lungs, and warrants further research.”