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New device can tackle sleep apnea

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Upper airway stimulation therapy is a new solution that could make medical history. (Source: WPXI/NBC) Upper airway stimulation therapy is a new solution that could make medical history. (Source: WPXI/NBC)

PITTSBURGH (WPXI/NBC) - Denise Hoover has started every day in pain for the past 20 years. Sleep apnea has been robbing her of a deep sleep.

"Your tongue basically blocks your airway and you stop breathing," she explains. "You wake up gasping."

It's so bad, she hasn't even had a dream in two decades. Instead, she's awake and sometimes wrestling with a CPAP mask.

She finally went to see Dr. Ryan Soose at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Mercy. He had a new solution that could end up making medical history.

It's called upper airway stimulation therapy, and UPMC has led the international trials.

Studies show it can reduce the effects of sleep apnea by 70 percent.

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