Three Mason City Clinic Physicians Recognized For Their Excellence In Treating Patients With Sleep Apnea

Three physicians of the Mason City Clinic ENT Department were awarded the “Inspire Excellence” designation for physicians who treat patients with obstructive sleep apnea with the Inspire implant and demonstrate excellent patient outcomes.  Said Knick Davis of Inspire Medical, “Mason City Clinic is the only facility in the country that has the Care Team of Excellence designation along with two ENT Physicians (Dan Lee, MD and Timothy Dettmer, MD) and a Sleep Physician (Phillip Lee, MD) and that all have individual ‘Physician of Excellence designations.'”

Three Mason City Clinic Physicians Recognized For Their Excellence In Treating Patients With Sleep Apnea
A big congratulations to Phil Lee, MD (left), and Dan Lee, MD (middle), and Tim Dettmer, MD (right) for being recognized by Inspire Medical as a Care Team of Excellence and each a Physician of Excellence. Physicians receive this recognition for excellence in the patient experience and outcomes.

Obstructive sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder that results from the throat muscles relaxing and blocking a person’s airway during sleep. It is characterized by repeated breathing pauses, which can occur dozens, if not hundreds of times through the night, causing blood oxygen levels to drop. The brain, sensing the lack of oxygen, wakes a person up to resume breathing. The repeated sleep-wake cycle can lead to serious health complications if left untreated, including cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeats, stroke, and even heart attacks. Sleep apnea also increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, acid reflux, and complications after surgery.

Said Timothy Dettmer, MD, “Until recently, the standard treatment for sleep apnea was CPAP therapy, which stands for continuous positive airway pressure. The device delivers pressurized air through a mask to keep the airways open. However, many patients find CPAP machines cumbersome and end up just living with their sleep apnea.”

Inspire is an FDA-approved obstructive sleep apnea treatment option for people who cannot use CPAP. Inspire works inside the body using mild stimulation to treat sleep apnea.  Inspire effectively monitors your breathing patterns and stimulates a person’s  hypoglossal nerve, which controls the movement of the tongue and other critical airway muscles. By doing so, it helps maintain an open airway during sleep. A user can activate the implant before bedtime and turn it off when they wake up with hand held remote.

Since 2019, the Mason City Clinic ENT specialty has treated 280 patients with the Inspire implant who have obstructive sleep apnea and the results for these patients has been exceptional. Before Inspire, on average, patients had  29.3 sleep apnea events per night; after Inspire, they had a 79% reduction in these events. Other outcomes for patients include an average Apnea Hypopnea Index (testing seriousness of sleep apnea) reduction of 90% and an average reduction in ESS (Epworth Sleepiness Score) of 60% .

For more on obstructive sleep apnea, and the Inspire implant procedure, see Dr. Dettmer’s explanation in this video:

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