Obstructive sleep apnea and hypoapnea syndrome (OSAHS) is important to orthodontists for several reasons. The authors, after defining OSAHS and describing it briefly, review the literature dealing with the cranio-facial morphology of apnea patients. They report the results of their cephalometric study, which is based on an architectural analysis of 274 patients.
Their facial characteristics, especially vertical dimension, are consistent with those displayed by mouth breathing children. Changes in respiratory functioning modify the mechanical behavior and the structures of the upper airways. Osseous tissues also show signs caused by these changes.
The authors propose an etiopathogenic model.