Improving Rest for Those with Sleep Apnea

With a simple touch of a button, you can control your moderate-to-severe obstructive sleep apnea. 

For many people with obstructive sleep apnea, getting a good night's sleep is few and far between, leaving them weary and without energy to complete daily tasks. Obstructive sleep apnea is a sleep-related breathing disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts. It affects nearly 30 million Americans according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and can potentially be a life-threatening condition, depending on the degree of severity. Several treatment options are available to patients; however, finding the right one can sometimes be difficult, leaving patients frustrated, exhausted, and looking for alternatives.

Dr. Morris shows where Inspire would be placed on a patient (John Planthaber).

An alternative is precisely what Huron resident, John Planthaber, was looking for. Planthaber suffered from sleep apnea for over 15 years, averaging 29 sleep apnea events per hour before treatment. Planthaber's struggles included finding a suitable mask, learning how to sleep with a mask covering his mouth and nose, and becoming dependent on the mask when he thought he would quit breathing in his sleep without it.

David Morris, MD, of Firelands Center for Sleep Disorders, evaluated Planthaber's sleep apnea and determined that he would be a good candidate for Inspire therapy. Planthaber was then referred to a surgeon, who works closely with Firelands Center for Sleep Disorders, to discuss the implant procedure. Once implanted, Planthaber returned to Dr. Morris for regular follow-up appointments and to adjust the device. “Planthaber showed good control over his sleep apnea events with Inspire therapy. Inspire worked just as well as CPAP did for Planthaber, Dr. Morris said.”

"Working with Inspire at Firelands really helped improve my sleep," mentioned Planthaber, who found success with Inspire. "I wish I had decided to have Inspire surgery much sooner, since sleeping like a normal person once again is a true blessing."

What is Inspire?

Inspire is the only FDA-approved obstructive sleep apnea treatment that works inside your body to treat sleep apnea without relying on a CPAP mask, hose, or machine. Inspire is a small device placed under the skin of the neck and chest through three small incisions during a same-day outpatient procedure. Patients can expect some pain and swelling at the incision sites for a few days after the procedure. However, patients can return to normal activities within two weeks, under the direction of a physician. Turned on by a hand-held remote, Inspire applies gentle stimulation to key airway muscles during sleep, allowing you to breathe normally.

"In our practice, we see many patients who have stopped using or are unable to tolerate CPAP," said Dr. Morris. "Inspire therapy represents a significant advance in sleep apnea treatment. It is clinically proven to reduce sleep apnea events, has high patient satisfaction and therapy adherence. We are excited to offer this promising therapy to sleep apnea patients who struggle with CPAP." 

Who qualifies for this treatment?

Any patient diagnosed with sleep apnea can self-refer to Dr. Morris, at Firelands Center for Sleep Disorders. He will perform a general physical examination, evaluate a patient's sleep apnea, and determine whether they are a candidate for this procedure. Patients are then referred for a surgical consultation with a surgeon we work closely with. The patient will undergo the outpatient procedure at MetroHealth or University Hospitals and return to Firelands Regional Medical Center for follow-up appointments, beginning one week after the procedure. After your device is implanted, Dr. Morris will also follow you through your treatment plan and provide convenient outpatient visits in our sleep disorders clinic at 1912 Hayes Avenue, Sandusky. 

For more information or to contact Firelands Center for Sleep Disorders, visit
or 419-557-7740.