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How Alaxo Airway Stents Work

Alaxo Airway Stents

There are two different product lengths which splint either the anterior nasal cavity only [2” Airway Stent] or the full length nasal passage [3” Airway Stent and 3″ Sport Airway Stent] (see Figs. 1a+b).

The Alaxo Airway Stents are medical devices for the improvement of nasal breathing. Potential causes of decreased nasal breathing are nasal alar collapse, nasal valve collapse or turbinate hyperplasia.

Design

The design of the stent braid is made from shape memory metal nitinol. It has a ball-shaped widening that gets positioned at the nasal valve, while the cylindrical longer portion opens the turbinates. 

The stent has an opening force to support the nasal alar and valve, while splinting the turbinates.  This leads to a healthy diameter of the airway and an improvement in nasal breathing.  The nasal tissue does not get overstretched and there is no mucosal irritation. 

How to use

Prior to insertion, the Airway Stent is pulled into a thin introduction tube (see Fig. 2).  This is then introduced horizontally into the nose (in the middle or lower nasal passage).  Subsequent retraction of the introduction tube from the nose leads to self-expansion of the nitinol braid.  The ball-shaped widening is located at the nasal valve (see arrow in right photo in Fig. 3).  The cylindrical portion of the stent splints the anterior (AlaxoLito 2”) or the full (AlaxoLito 3”) nasal passage.  

Stents are used in both the right and left nostril. The stents are easily self-inserted by patients and the design makes the stents hardly visible in the nostrils. (see Fig. 3).

Fig. 1a: Graphical display of positioning of the 2” Airway Stent in the anterior nasal cavity

Fig. 1b: Graphical display of positioning of the 3″ Airway Stent and Sport in the nasal passage

Patient Experience

The use of the Airway Stents leads to a significant improvement in nasal breathing, leading to a more relaxing sleep because of increased oxygen supply.

Fig. 2 Top 2” Airway Stent, Bottom 3” Airway Stent

Fig. 3: 2” Airway Stent and 3” Airway Stent positioned in the nose; arrow: positioning of the ball-shaped widening at the nasal alar compared to nostril without Airway Stent.

Watch

A Natural Breathing Experience

6″ Airway Stent

The 6″ Alaxo Airway Stent is an FDA registered medical device.  It has been clinically tested to treat obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and snoring.  This medical device can be inserted by the patient into his nose and throat at night, and removed in the morning. 

Design

The design of the stent braid is made from shape memory metal nitinol and mechanically stents the soft palate.

How to use

The nitinol braid [1] is compressed into a thin tube [2] (see Fig. 4) before introduction into one nostril. This tube is then slowly introduced through one nasal passage to the throat. When released from the introduction tube, the nitinol braid expands and attaches to the wall of the throat.

Fig. 4: The two major 6″ Airway Stent components: [1] nitinol braid, [2] introduction tube. 

Fig. 5: Positioning of the 6″ Airway Stent

Without Therapy With 6" Airway Stent  With CPAP
AHI 31/h 19/h 8.2/h
Obstructive Apneas 43.0 2.2 2.5
Minimal Oxygen Saturation 79% 84% 89%

Research

Table 1: Results from ENT University Hospital of Erlangen, Germany (by Dr. Michael Hartl, MD)

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