A restful night’s sleep can greatly depend on your breathing. That’s why when you and your doctor are looking into treatment options for your sleep interruptions, it’s vital that you look at your breathing patterns and behaviors.

What is Upper Airway Resistance Syndrome?

When the snoring and the resistance present in the airway are  prominent  enough to disrupt sleep, it is considered upper airway resistance syndrome or “UARS”. Patients with UARS, have such poor sleep quality that it results in clinical consequences such as insomnia and persistent drowsiness. However, something  important to note is that not all patients with UARS have noticeable snoring. Some patients have more of an increase in the effort  to breath due to a respiratory obstruction such as and enlarged tongue base. Other symptoms of UARS are dry mouth, morning headaches, insomnia or lack of energy during the day.

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Dr Cosgriff was wonderful, very professional, knowledgeable and helped a lot. I was having problems with ear wax in my very small ear canals, and I went to a unrelated clinic first to get it removed. They only made it worse, and actually cut my ear canal, I couldn’t hear from the blocked wax, then suggested I go to an ENT. I was able to get a quick appointment with Dr Cosgriff, and with her special tools, and her expertise, she was able to fix my ears right away. What a difference! I found her office on yelp with all the positive reviews! Thank goodness!

Dr. Jeffrey Cutler is terrific. I have had chronic sinusitis for years. Dr. Cutler has mapped out strategies and procedures to mitigate the frequency of my sinusitis episodes. He is personable, relatable, and takes the time to question and completely understand your current situation. He uses diagnostic tools, your history & physical examination to estblish a differential diagnosis and then discusses treatment options with you NOT to you. He is top notch.

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 Causes & Treatment of UARS

UARS is now believed to be the middle ground between benign snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. This is not a quick process but rather a natural progression over time from harmless snoring to UARS, and finally to obstructive sleep apnea. This process likely occurs over many years. One of the few instances where this happens more rapidly is after weight gain. Even though UARS is not full-blown  sleep apnea, it is still important to see your ENT specialist for treatment because of the potential progression of your symptoms. By opening the upper airway, you can experience better sleep and wake  up more refreshed and ready to start your day.

Read Our Blog

What Causes Snoring?


Easy Steps to Help Reduce Snoring


Schedule a Consultation

If you are located in the Denver and Lone Tree area and you are noticing fatigue and wake up feeling tired with other symptoms, give us a call to schedule an office evaluation. Associates of Otolaryngology  is ready to help you find your individual treatment plan.


  1. www.sleepapnea.org
  2. www.aasm.org
  3. www.sleepeducation.org
  4. med.stanford.edu

Keith Swartz, M.D.

Dr. Keith Swartz is dual-board-certified in otolaryngology and sleep medicine, and he received his medical degree from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. He was the Chief Resident of the Department of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery at the United States Air Force Academy and founded the first comprehensive home sleep testing protocol in the United States Air Force. When not helping patients at the Associates of Otolaryngology, he loves to ski, fly fish, and spend time with his wife and three kids.

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